Attention all artists, musicians, filmmakers, designers, actors, bloggers, and anyone
working in the creative economy – ev...
Be Your Own Heroine
Chapter 9 ‘The best thing that I love about my work is seeing talent take flight! There are
so many...
9‘There are a bevy of exciting projects in the pipeline, all rooted in diversity and
with the aim of precipitating chan...
‘My greatest achievemnet is working with individuals and organizations to inspire positive change.’
- Kay de Gier-Form...
9
“No one is born hating another person because of the colour of his skin, or his back-
ground, or his religion. People mu...
Photography: HealthNet TPO
Diversity is interconnected and it is only when we string together reinforcing compo-
nents aro...
‘My passion is my family. I feel so blessed with a partner whom I deeply love
and our children who create magical moment...
14
Photography: Karen Kaper
“Ubuntu is very difficult to render into a Western language. It speaks of the very es-
sence o...
How does Unconscious Bias retard the benefits of Diversity?
Unconscious bias heavily influences our decisions around talen...
I have been fascinated by this area for the last 5-7 years and have committed much
of my time and focus to this area of sp...
You enjoy writing and have published various works. Which pu-
blication would you like to select to share with our readers...
He then highlights that it is in helping others to achieve their dreams, that ones own
childhood dreams are really achieve...
Founder and Managing Director
KAY Diversity & Performance BV
www.diversityandperformance.com | kay@diversityandperformance...
Camilla Hendriks
MediaShapes
A passion For Diversity
2016
The Heroine’s Journey
Follow us
www.peterdekuster.wordpress.com
...
of 14

Preview The Heroine's Journey Passion for Diversity

Preview chapter of a special The Heroine's Journey edition with stories of twelve professionals whose passion is 'diversity'.
Published on: Mar 4, 2016
Published in: Travel      
Source: www.slideshare.net


Transcripts - Preview The Heroine's Journey Passion for Diversity

  • 1. Attention all artists, musicians, filmmakers, designers, actors, bloggers, and anyone working in the creative economy – even if your chosen profession is not the most tra- ditional one, cultivating and growing a successful, financially rewarding career is still your goal. In The Heroine’s Journey Making Money Doing What You Love, Peter de Kuster provides you with stories of creative heroes in world cities on overcoming some of the specific challenges faced by right-brainers who want a career that is both satisfying and suc- cessful. Creative professionals, entrepreneurs, freelancers, those thinking about changing ca- reers midstream, and even creative people working in corporate environments need a set of skills that will turn their passion into a viable career. These skills are: • How to chose the career that best suits your talents. • Setting realistic goals using right-brain techniques. • How to avoid the pitfalls that ruin a creative career. • How to schmooze your way to success. • How to create a business plan when you are the business. • How to be disciplined when you are your own boss. When you find an outlet for your creativity in the form of a career, you’ll discover a freedom in your working life that you can live with for the long term. You can follow your passion, build a brilliant career, and have financial security – if you know which skills to use. Let Peter de Kuster be your travel guide. Are You Making Money Doing What You Love? Peter de Kuster A passion For Diversity - 2016 The Heroine’s Journey Fotografie:KarenKaper
  • 2. Be Your Own Heroine Chapter 9 ‘The best thing that I love about my work is seeing talent take flight! There are so many organizations where talent is dormant and waiting to be set free.’ - Kay de Gier-Formanek, The Netherlands - Kay de Gier-Formanek - The Netherlands Photography: Karen Kaper
  • 3. 9‘There are a bevy of exciting projects in the pipeline, all rooted in diversity and with the aim of precipitating change in organizations and within our society.‘ - Kay de Gier-Formanek, The Netherlands - 5 Kay de Gier-Formanek is founder of KAY Diversity and Performance, a company spe- cialised in unleashing the benefits of diversity such as improved innovation, creativity, wellness of staff and bottom line performance (ROI, ROE et al). For more than 27 years, Kay has partnered with profit and non-profit organizations to shape their diversity programs and drive performance outcomes. Her roots are in South Africa where she was exposed to the societal and business impact of retarding diversity and studied the manner in which diversity can be unleashed to drive recovery and business transformation. Now settled in Europe (The Netherlands), Kay conducts research on diversity and per- formance, has collaborated on books on diversity, is a much sought out speaker on the subject, offers executive coaching to Executive Boards and leaders, shapes leadership development programs, and works with leadership to institute changes which will rea- lize improved business performance. Prior to founding KAY Diversity & Performance in 2014, Kay was managing director in Accenture leading the Accenture Life Sciences Practice in Europe, Africa and Latin Ame- rica with Profit and Loss Responsibility. Before assuming this role, Kay worked across a number of industry sectors such as Health and Life Sciences, Retail, Consumer Goods and Financial Services holding industry and client leadership roles for Accenture during her 24-year tenure at Accenture. Hand-in-hand with these roles, Kay held the roles of Diversity & Inclusion lead for Ac- centure in The Netherlands, assumed the role of Coaching Partner in the global Accen- ture Leadership & Development Program and participated in the design and rollout of the Accenture Unconscious Bias Program. The golden thread in Kay’s professional and private sphere has been her passion to unlock unique talent in organizations and to sponsor leadership and diversity. It is this unique passion and experience that Kay now brings to KAY Diversity & Performance. Kay is based in The Netherlands, married and mother to 3 children. She is committed to the recovery of societies brutalised by war in fragile states and is Vice-Chair to Health- Net TPO. Kay is an avid sportswoman and is a keen horse riding enthusiast. Photography: Karen Kaper Kay de Gier-Formanek
  • 4. ‘My greatest achievemnet is working with individuals and organizations to inspire positive change.’ - Kay de Gier-Formanek, The Netherlands - 6 What is your greatest passion? My passion is my family. I feel so blessed with a partner whom I deeply love and our children who create magical moments of loving and learning for me each day. This pas- sion provides me with much of the inspiration and energy that I funnel into my other great passions: my work on diversity and performance and the contribution as Vice Chair to the aid agency HealthNet TPO. My company, KAY Diversity & Performance, was founded with the purpose of realizing business performance in organizations (profit and none-profit) by harnessing the be- nefits of diversity. Our research confirms that diversity, if well anchored in a company, significantly improves ROI, ROE, innovation, engagement, and wellness of the work- force. What is your idea of perfect happiness? Galloping through the savannas of Southern Africa on horseback, past herds of wilde- beest, giraffe, impalas; inhaling the richness of the kicked up earth and feeling: “I am free! I am alive!” in every fibre of my body. I experienced this moment of perfect hap- piness with my husband on our honeymoon in Botswana and it is our dream to re-live this moment with our three children. What is the best thing that you love about your work? Seeing talent take flight! There are so many organizations where talent is dormant and waiting to be set free. The moments when one is able to tap into the belly of an organi- zation and work authentically with leaders to free dormant talent so that the capability can stir and fly is humbling and richly rewarding. Who is your greatest fan and sponsor? My husband is my soul mate! He grounds me and supports me as I rekindle my child- hood dreams. What is the influence of role models, in your work and in your life? I grew up in South Africa. As a child I experienced the ravages of Apartheid and as a young adult I experienced the promise of a rainbow nation. Throughout this time Mandela (Madiba) assumed a prominent role in my life and inspired me by his deeds, through his writings and in his ability to forgive and connect. Photography: Karen Kaper
  • 5. 9 “No one is born hating another person because of the colour of his skin, or his back- ground, or his religion. People must learn to hate, and if they can learn to hate, they can be taught to love, for love comes more naturally to the human heart than its op- posite.” – Mandela – What is your greatest fear? Not loving enough, not caring enough, not celebrating life enough. This fear is encap- sulated in the poem by Tennyson (The Wastrel) that captures the regret of not having spent ones time wisely, so poignantly. Wastrel (Alfred Lord Tennyson) I wasted time throughout my early years and emphasized my chase for corporate gold. I knew of course, that everyone grows old unless an early death brings loved-ones tears.
 I wasted time. I wasted time while children’s magic bloomed, and took for granted miracles in play. I let too many moments slip away. I failed to nurture love that was presumed. I wasted time. I wasted time just letting days go by. But now I savor simple daily things - a child that laughs, a parakeet that sings - and cannot help but often wonder why I wasted time. What is your greatest achievement in work? Working with individuals and organizations to inspire positive change. Being able to remove obstacles so that talented leaders can stride forward in an authentic manner with high impact. Being able to translate our research results on Unconscious Bias into interventions that allow organizations to better tap into talent as they take control over their implicit biases. Photography: Karen Kaper ‘As a child, we mostly have free flight to pursue our dreams. The magical brain of a child per- ceives the world as an endless array of possibilities and opportunities, often the bigger, the better.’ - Kay de Gier-Formanek, The Netherlands -
  • 6. Photography: HealthNet TPO Diversity is interconnected and it is only when we string together reinforcing compo- nents around diversity (such as unconscious bias, behaviour, performance outcomes, leadership role, structure, metrics and values) that we are better able to tap into the positive outcomes of diversity. Our research and experience confirms that diversity is a powerful driver of strategic transformation when not only in the domain of HR but also in the domain of the CEO and the Board. I welcome the opportunity to work with others on this topic and invite interested parties to reach out and collaborate. Tell me more about South Africa and the lessons that we can learn for diversity management? I was privileged to grow up in South Africa and South Africa has shaped me in my role of mother and career woman. South Africa has fed my passion for diversity and allowed me to witness the critical role of Diversity. Mandela captured this beautifull in a famous quote: “Each of us is as intimately attached to the soil of this beautiful country as are the famous jacaranda trees of Pretoria and the mimosa trees of the bushveld – a rainbow nation at peace with itself and the world.” 11 Whom would you like to work with in the future? Profit and none-profit organizations which are striving to unveil the soft and hard bene- fits of diversity in their organization and in society. I take a sheer delight in partnering with authentic clients who are passionate to spearhead real changes. Recently, I was appointed as Vice-Chair to HealthNet TPO, an aid agency that works on health in areas disrupted by war or disasters. Having grown up in Africa and having witnessed poverty and conflict, it is deeply ful- filling to work with a diverse team that assists people, afflicted by poverty, diseases and the emotional consequences of war, to rebuild their society. By working with local communities, HealthNet TPO uses ‘health’ as a means to bring people together and to restore mutual trust. What project, in the nearby future, are you looking forward to work on? There are a bevy of exciting projects in the pipeline, all rooted in diversity and with the aim of precipitating change in organizations and within our society. I am collaborating with various stakeholders to extend the body of research around the “ecosystem of diversity”. For Diversity to flourish in an organization we can learn much from our own natural ecosystem. 10 ‘Recently, I was appointed as Vice-Chair to HealthNet TPO, an aid agency that works on health in areas disrupted by war or disasters.’ - Kay de Gier-Formanek, The Netherlands -
  • 7. ‘My passion is my family. I feel so blessed with a partner whom I deeply love and our children who create magical moments of loving and learning for me each day.’ - Kay de Gier-Formanek, The Netherlands - 12 13 Finally, Mandela practiced what he preached. He was an exemplary leader of diver- sity. He did not delegate the quest for diversity to others. He embraced diversity and lived diversity. South Africa has clearly influenced your perspective on life and business. How do you draw on these concepts in your work and life? Indeed, South Africa has created a bedrock of learnings and inspirations for me in my business and in my role as human being in a global society! For example the concept of “Ubuntu” is a morale anchor for me and I believe an excellent morale anchor for society as it grapples with conflict and globalisation. Let me explain. Ubuntu is a beautiful — and old — concept that is difficult to translate accurately be- cause it is a way of being … of behaving … it refers to the act of “human kindness,” but its meaning is larger and more fundamental. Ubuntu embodies the ideas of connection, community, and mutual caring for all. It is a term used in the writings of great South African leaders, like Archbishop Desmond Tutu and Mandela. Mandela did not use the term Rainbow Nation as a candy-coated myth. Rather Mandela wished to pay tribute to the coming-together of people of many different nations in a country that had endured an Apartheid (‘the state of being apart’) regime for 46 years (1948 to 1994). During this period people were strictly classified and discriminated on the basis of colour, leaving deep scars of unequal distribution of income and opportu- nities and social and cultural radicalization. In 1994, Mandela was confronted as leader with the question: “How to tap into the diversity of a land that was and is so divided?” Do you believe that we can successfully apply the learnings from Mandela and his role as change agent in South Africa to organizations? Yes! Certainly! Mandela followed a logical and well-thought out process to heal past wrongs and create a platform for diversity. These steps can be replicated successfully within a business context. Firstly, Mandela realized that the country needed to be healed. The Truth and Re- conciliation Commission (TRC) was a type of court established to help heal the country and bring the reconciliation of its people by uncovering the truth about the human rights violations that had occurred. The objective was not to prosecute past crimes. Rather the intent was to uncover information and allow victims and perpetrators to share their stories. Secondly, Mandela understood that a new framework was required to safeguarded diversity and equality. He enacted the new Constitution of South Africa in 1996 after a very detailed process of consultation and negotiation. The preamble states: “South Africa belongs to all who live in it, united in our diversity.” Human dignity, the achieve- ment of equality and the advancement of human rights and freedoms is cemented in its Bill of Rights (Chapter 2) enumerating the civil, political, economic, social and cultural human rights of South Africa. Thirdly, Mandela realized that cultural diversity could only flourish if all groups are recognized and heard. As a result South Africa is the only country in the world to recognize 11 official languages. This was done to recognize and sponsor the amazingly rich diversity of people: the Nguni (comprising Zulu, Xhosa, Ndebele and Sazi people), the SAN people, the Sotho Stana, the Tsonga and the Venda, Europeans, people of mixed race and also people of Asian descent. Fourthly, Mandela sponsored and created unifying events and symbols. In 1995 Mandela attended the Rugby World Cup final wearing the Springboks jersey. What had been formally a symbol for the white minority became with that gesture the symbol of unity. Photo: Archive Kay de Gier-Formanek
  • 8. 14 Photography: Karen Kaper “Ubuntu is very difficult to render into a Western language. It speaks of the very es- sence of being human. It is to say, My humanity is inextricably bound up in yours. We belong in a bundle of life.” Bishop Desmond Tutu captured Ubuntu is a beautiful way when he said: “A person with Ubuntu is open and available to others, affirming of others, does not feel threatened that others are able and good, for he or she has a proper self-assurance that comes from knowing that he or she belongs in a greater whole and is diminished when others are humiliated or diminished, when others are tortured or oppressed.” – Bishop Desmond Tutu – Many people find the concept of Ubuntu easy to apply in their family life but difficult in our work. There appears to be a pressing need to perform (ahead of ones colleague), to claim the light in a way that leaves others in the shadow and to dehumanize the interactions in the corporate world. However, there are some incredible businesses where exceptional business outcomes are delivered while maintaining the humanity of interactions. If one examines these businesses for similarities one recognizes reoc- curing and important themes: celebration of diversity, confirmation of shared values, networked organization (internally and externally), passionate sponsorship of talent, authentic leadership. I hope that I am able to embody a spark of Ubuntu in the way that I conduct my life. It would be a great honor if someone would say to me: “Yu, u nobunto”. For it would be a confirmation that I am living my life in a way that recognizes that I am connected to a greater society and contribute positively to the bundle of life to which I belong. What is Unconscious Bias and how does it impact diversity? Over the last 25 years I have observed more and more companies understanding the linkage between diversity and performance (“the business case for diversity”) and eager to improve their organizational diversity. And this has resulted in a spate of di- versity and inclusion initiatives. However, companies have become frustrated because after an initial spike in diversity figures and outcomes, they have witnessed a plateau in their diversity efforts (a “diver- sity ceiling”). Research has shown that this plateau is largely a result of “unconscious bias”. Other terms include implicit bias or hidden bias. As the term suggests, unconscious bias refers to a bias that we are unaware of and happens outside of our control. It is a bias that happens automatically and is trigge- red by our brain making quick judgments and assessments of people and situations, influenced by our background, cultural environment and personal experiences (ECU: 2013). ‘I hope that I am able to embody a spark of Ubuntu in the way that I conduct my life.’ - Kay de Gier-Formanek, The Netherlands -
  • 9. How does Unconscious Bias retard the benefits of Diversity? Unconscious bias heavily influences our decisions around talent: assessment, recruit- ment, selection, promotion, succession planning, rewards and benefits. Let me provide an example. Globally, we face a significant shortage in talent in the areas of Science, Technology, Engineering and Mathematics (S.T.E.M) and women are significantly underrepresented in these fields. To-date subsidies have been directed at stimulating school-going girls to pursue these STEM studies and to offer sponsorship to female students. But, what if the issue is more fundamental, namely: what if science faculty hold an un- conscious bias that women are less competent than men in the field of science and this influences their selection results? Moss-Racusin et al (2012) researched this question by asking Science Faculty (Professors) to review a number of student applications. Un- known to the faculty the applications were identical, save for the gender of the name of the applicant (John or Jennifer). The results were very worrying: The gender of the applicant had a statistically signifi- cant effect on the reviewer’s evaluation of the applicant’s competence, employability, salary grant, and the mentorship offered. Specifically Science faculty: • rate male candidates as better qualified than female candidates (on scale of 1 to 7, male candidates evaluated as 4.01 and female candidates evaluated as 3.33, on an identical application). • want to hire the male candidates rather than the female candidates. • give the male candidate a higher starting salary than the female candidate (starting salary of $30,200 for male applicant and $25,500 for female appli- cants, on an identical application). • be willing to invest more in the development of the male candidate. The faculty members did not wish to discriminate and in fact wished to sponsor a grea- ter inflow of women students into Science Faculty posts. However, the research confir- med that the Science Faculty, men and women alike, held the subtle bias that women are less competent than men in science. This bias has been fostered through societal stereotypes and limited exposure to women role models. This unconscious bias has negatively impacted gender diversity in S.T.E.M. 17 ‘Unconscious bias heavily influences our decisions around talent.’ - Kay de Gier-Formanek, The Netherlands - Photography: Karen Kaper
  • 10. I have been fascinated by this area for the last 5-7 years and have committed much of my time and focus to this area of specialization. I am collaborating with a number of researchers and authors to explore how an organization is able put “breaks” on the individual and collective bias that occurs at work, especially at times where decisions are being made on scarce talent. Through Kay Diversity and Performance the learning is translated to organizational in- terventions, including Diversity Executive Coaching, Unconscious Bias Testing and Edu- cation, Facilitation, Lectures and Advisory Services. Please share some of the analogies that you have drawn from horse riding to authentic leadership. Of course! Horse sport involves the interaction between rider and horse (such as the jury, or the spectators, or the elements of weather). While a rider needs to be techni- cally excellent, this technical excellence will not lead to victory. To perform, a technically excellent rider needs to be in touch with his/her horse, to anti- cipate the needs of his/her horse and at the same time be in tune with the external en- vironment. To excel, the rider needs to be agile – like a boxer in a ring – always anticipating and re- sponding and flexing. I believe that this is a great analogy for leadership. So, while a leader may have had a positive result with one organization, he/she will not be assured of replicating these successes to another. The leader will need to be attuned to the needs of the organization and recognize the ten- sion and needs of the business. The leaders will need to be agile and be able to adapt his/her leadership style to bring out the best performance. When I train with my horse and my trainer, I am continually reminded of the above truth. If one wants to ride in harmony with ones horse, one needs to not only show up. But, show up with the right temperament. As rider one cannot coerce ones will on a horse for the horse is far more powerful in physical strength to the rider. A rider is able to achieve great things with a great horse when his/her behaviour is characterized by respectful and consistent behaviour and the agility of mind and body to respond to his/ her horse and external environment. 19 ‘Under the guidance of a wonderful trainer I have distilled analogies for authentic leadership from my pastime of riding.’ - Kay de Gier-Formanek, The Netherlands - Photography: Patricia vd Kroon
  • 11. You enjoy writing and have published various works. Which pu- blication would you like to select to share with our readers and why? This past year I wrote an essay entitled “Rekindling Your Childhood Dreams” and I hope it touches dormant dreams and liberates them. Rekindle Your Childhood Dreams Written by Kay de Gier-Formanek “Remember those childhood dreams, the ones spun with the thread of youthful exube- rance and belief. The dreams that fluttered deep inside you and allowed your spirit to rise; rise like a bird. I dream. I am. I can. Remember the playground brawls where you defended the dreams with clenched fists and hot tears. Do not play with my dreams. They are real. They are me. As time whispers by, the swell of the childhood dreams subside, their waves no longer pound upon our conscious, but slowly, slowly ebb away. They are drawn away into the expected, into the mundane and into the morass of rules and expectations. But, now and again, when we least expect it, something stirs in us, and we feel the flutter of bygone wings and the ache of longing for the dreams of our childhood.” To dream as a child is to have a goal that is so important that you will do almost any- thing to turn it into reality, into flight. You want it and need it so badly that you think constantly about it, and you conjure ingenious schemes to facilitate it along its way. The dream, the goal, fills you with longing, and the longing creates energy and a fee- ling of purpose. As a child, we mostly have free flight to pursue our dreams. The magical brain of a child perceives the world as an endless array of possibilities and opportunities, often the bigger, the better. “I want to be the first person on Mars; I want all children to be able to go to school; I want to be an inventor and invent water-fuelled cars; I want to be an explorer and travel the world.” With the right care and guidance the essence of the dream is explored and the dream or parts of the dreams can flourish and take flight. But, many a dreamer has had their dreams shattered along the way and dares not to dream. “Stop dreaming, take your head out of the clouds, and get real!” The renounce- ment of the dream creates an emptiness and a longing, which is not easily quenched. 20 ‘When I chartered a new career path, I acquired a horse to represent freedom and opportunity: a magical black stallion.’ - Kay de Gier-Formanek, The Netherlands - Photography: Patricia vd Kroon
  • 12. He then highlights that it is in helping others to achieve their dreams, that ones own childhood dreams are really achieved. Finally, he stresses the importance of mentors, parents, colleagues, family and friends in keeping your dreams alive. Pausch concluded his lecture with the words: “It’s not about how to achieve your dreams, it’s about how to lead your life. If you lead your life the right way, the karma will take care of itself, the dreams will come to you.” – Randy Pausch – In conclusion... Take the time to embrace your childhood dreams like long lost friends. Welcome them into your life. Sit them down before you, examining their contours and shape. Explore what it was in the dream that stirred you as a child, providing you with hope and a sense of purpose. And with this new found wisdom you are able to journey with your long-lost childhood friends along 3 intertwined paths: 1 rekindle your own dreams; 2 help others to achieve their dreams 3 be the mentor and colleague and friend that inspires others to dream and gives permission to dream. (*1) The Atlantic, Well-Being Assessment: An Evaluation of Well-Being Scales for Public Health and Population Estimates of Well-Being among US Adults (*2) Hill, P. L., Jackson, J. J., Roberts, B. W., Lapsley, D. K., & Brandenberger, J. W. (2011). Change you can believe in: Changes in goal-setting during emerging and young adult- hood predict later adult well-being. Social Psychological and Personality Science, 2, 123-131. (*3) You can see the lecture on YouTube. More than 20 millions views; https://youtu.be/ji5_MqicxSo (*4) This talk (delivered on 18 September 2007) was modeled on a series of lectures where top academics are asked to think deeply about what matters to them, and then give a hypothetical “final talk”, i.e., “what wisdom would you try to impart to the world if you knew it was your last chance?” And have you rekindled an early childhood dream? As a child I was in awe of horses. I remember lying on my back in the grass at the back of our house and praying fervently for the gift of a horse. This was not to be. As an adult I still felt the intense childhood longing of long ago and when I chartered a new career path, I acquired a horse to represent freedom and opportunity: a magical black stallion. 22 23 According to the Centre for Disease control, about 4 out of 10 Americans admit not having discovered a satisfying life purpose. Forty percent either do not think their lives have a clear sense of purpose or are neutral about whether their lives have purpose. Nearly a quarter of Americans feels neutral or do not have a sense of what makes their lives meaningful (*1). In another related study (*2) researchers found that people with a greater sense of purpose and direction in life predict later adult well-being. Randy Pausch – then professor of computer science, human-computer interaction, and design at Carnegie Mellon University in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania - delivered one of the most impactful lectures on the subject of childhood dreams in his ‘last lecture’ entitled Really Achieving Your Childhood Dreams (*3). A month before delivering his ‘final talk’ (*4), Randy Pausch had received a prognosis that the pancreatic cancer, which had been diagnosed a year earlier, was terminal. In his 1 hour 16 minute lecture he describes his childhood dreams and the unique way in which he captured his dreams and made sure that they did not perish. ‘My greatest fan is my husband! He’s my soul mate, he grounds me and supports me as I rekindle my childhood dreams.’ - Kay de Gier-Formanek, The Netherlands - Photography: Karen Kaper
  • 13. Founder and Managing Director KAY Diversity & Performance BV www.diversityandperformance.com | kay@diversityandperformance.com Vice Chair of Aid Agency: HealthNet TPO 24 Kay de Gier-Formanek 25 Two years have passed and I ride every day. These moments, when one is at peace with oneself and ones horse, are regenerative and beckon new insights and new dreams. Under the guidance of a wonderful trainer I have distilled analogies for authentic lea- dership from my pastime of riding. And these analogies now form the chapters of a book to be published. My dream is that others will be inspired by these learning and will also tap into their childhood dreams and pastimes. How have you allowed your childhood dreams to shape your work? I grew up with my sister on the savannas of South Africa. As child of a geologist father and mother, we lived for the first years of our lives in a caravan near mountainous rock formations. We played in the ‘bush’ with kids drawn from the rainbow nation of South Africa. And when we were older we went to a school that celebrated diversity of its students, its credo being “Franc Ha Leal”, Free and Loyal and its motto being “Dream, Believe, Achieve”. In the seeds of my family and my school, my childhood dreams took form. I wanted to make a positive difference to others. I wanted to be free. In a child’s mind the exact form of the childhood dream is not clear – and in my case as well - but the heartbeat of the dream was all-powerful. How does the dream take form and catch flight? In my case it was through a process of living and learning and having the courage and sup- port to make adjustments along the way. As a young adult, I believed that I would be able to make a difference through the structures of an extensive corporate and it was a path that I followed for many years. However the pounding of the childhood dreams became weaker amidst the hectic and the unbending corporate structures and I realized that there was a risk of loosing my childhood dreams. There was a fork in the road of my life. Does ones embrace ones childhood dreams or allow them to fade? In my case I surveyed the contours and the shape of my childhood dreams and crafted a way forward which would allow the childhood dreams to take flight. And this was the birth of KAY Diversity and Performance BV and the stewardship roles that I assume in profit and not-for-profit organizations such as HealthNet TPO. These choices allow me to contribute to a more positive world through mentorship and action and by every day encouraging my own children to dream.
  • 14. Camilla Hendriks MediaShapes A passion For Diversity 2016 The Heroine’s Journey Follow us www.peterdekuster.wordpress.com In store now www.boekenbestellen.nl

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