A Reflection on Listening, Sharing and Engaging Your Communities

As I began my morning routine on Monday, I wanted to go back to bed. I was scheduled to lecture for two hours about crisis leadership for banking school– and I had nothing to offer – or so I thought. I began my lecture by sharing the heartbreak I experienced over the weekend and admitting that I felt speechless.

For many of us, it has been hard to share this week. I’ve spent an overwhelming amount of time talking with clients about these messaging challenges, so much that I haven’t shared as much personally. Many of us have second-guessing ourselves – or we’ve simply not been able to find the right words. This hesitancy to use our voices causes us to fulfill the roles needed in our communities. Throughout the week, I’ve been reflecting on the conversations I’ve had with our friends and clients across the country, many of whom have felt compelled to speak up. As this week comes to the close, I feel less speechless as I continue to have open conversations:

Humility causes us to listen.

Listening often means that you’re also asking questions. I’ve felt humbled not knowing the right question to ask and some of my friends have been gracious and patient to help me to understand.

We can’t second guess the right thing.

Whether the right thing is to make a statement or engage in a difficult conversation with a coworker or family member, the right thing should not be second guessed.

Loving your neighbor may be hard.

This is even harder on social media. I’ve read far too many comments this week. Take a break when you need to and speak up when you know it is right.

In an age of “cancel culture,” we don’t get to cancel our community.

This means we can’t cancel those who are part of it. Instead,we must use every tool we have to engage.

Our clients are the heart of their communities.

I know that our hearts hurt at this time for those who have been marginalized in the black community.

While I may not have made all the right decisions this week, I’ve had the opportunity to listen to community leaders, friends and my team share their perspectives. I also see our clients sharing positive messages with their communities; I encourage you to share those with me so we can move forward together.

#BlackLivesMatter is a movement that has elevated a conversation that has often been swept under the rug. At Social Assurance, we stand with the black community and will commit to using our business, our voice and our resources to helping support by listening, sharing and engaging.

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