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How to Save Your Diversity Program From an Untimely Demise


"We just lost our lord.”

That was what one employee of an academic medical center told me after her boss, Beth, left. As the head of diversity in the dean’s office, Beth was in charge of fixing the problems of physician burnout, work-life conflict, and turnover for the center’s 2,000 faculty employees. (Note: Names of individuals and organizations have been changed throughout the piece to preserve their anonymity during the research process.)

Beth’s solution: an ambitious program that combined career-development opportunities with a system where faculty could earn points for service activities that fall predominantly to women (such as mentoring and serving on committees). They could then redeem those points for time-saving benefits—like house cleaning, grant-writing services, and meal services. Her plan was wildly successful at the start, earning praise from reporters at major national media outlets. Faculty shared their gratitude.

Read more at Behavioral Scientist