Had a diversity training at the ole job recently and it introduced me to The Cultural Proficiency Group's "Cultural Proficiency Continuum" or as I like to think of it: a continuum of acceptance. Since I've been blogging and thinking a lot about racism and other forms of discrimination lately, I was very interested to find something that could break up the different kinds of reactions people have into something that disrupts the normal dichotomy of acceptance/rejection. I like the idea of there being a variety of of ways to accept others and it makes me feel like those fuzzy gray places that lacked definition before now have a rather simple explanation.
This is the "Cultural Proficiency Continuum":
- Cultural destructiveness: See the difference, stomp it out. The elimination of other people's cultures
- Cultural incapacity: See the difference, make it wrong. Belief in the superiority of one's own culture and behavior that dis-empowers another's culture.
- Cultural blindness: See the difference, act like you don't. Acting as if the cultural differences you see do not matter, or not recognizing that there are differences among and between cultures.
- Cultural pre-competence: See the difference, respond inadequately. Awareness of the limitations of one's skills or an organization's practices when interacting with other cultural groups.
- Cultural competence: See the difference, understand the difference that difference makes. Interacting with other cultural groups using the five essential elements of cultural proficiency:
- Name the differences: Assess culture
- Claim the differences: Value diversity
- Reframe the differences: Manage the dynamics of difference
- Train about differences: Adapt to diversity
- Change for differences: Institutionalize cultural knowledge
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