When it comes to an issue like diversity, its easy to convince ourselves that because were striving toward it, we should all feel pretty good about ourselves. Were more enlightened human beings. We can pat ourselves on the back for holding conferences on it, publishing magazines about it, and otherwise integrating the concept into our cultural zeitgeist as if simply giving it attention somehow gets results. It doesn’t. At least not on its own.
A true commitment to diversity takes hard work. But let’s give the industry some well-deserved credit here. Cable’s diversity efforts in recent years, fueled by NAMIC, WICT and other associations, as well as the focused attention of several cable CEOs have led to vast improvements. Few industries give it as much attention. And few are as reflective about what still needs to be done. Cable does care deeply about this, as evidenced by the pages of this magazine and the multi-ethnic execs who hold powerful positions throughout cable.
That doesn’t mean all is well. While diversity reigns across management at both MSOs and at networks, it’s more elusive in the C-suite, especially on the operator side. But as the NCTA’s first African-American pres/CEO Michael Powell told us in this issue, diversity must be a strategic business imperative for any company that wants to succeed, and it’s a shared responsibility that everyone must embrace. We argue that a diverse workforce is a strong one. And we contend that the strength gained through diverse perspectives can be a powerful competitive weapon for cable.
The people in these pages are among the leaders carving a path forward. Others will follow them. And still others. And eventually, this industry will reach its diversity goals.
We broke things up differently this year. The Superpowers section includes multicultural execs we think wield the most industry power. Then we have The Leaders, who are ranked and represent the core of this industry’s diverse talent pool. The Influentials consist of effective execs across cable. And then there are our important Regionals and Top Tech lists. In addition, we have included our annual list of The Top 10 Places to Work, which considers diversity programs along with other criteria. And of course we pay homage to NAMIC’s 2011 EMMA winners, who impress us all every single year.
Remember, action not words. We’e getting there.