What Black Leaders Bring to the Table March 2, 2021

from HBR IdeaCast· ·

Chad Sanders, a former tech executive and entrepreneur, says that people of color, especially Black men like him, often feel the need to assimilate to white corporate culture. They learn to code switch and downplay their race. But Sanders realized a few years into his career that, by trying to fit in, he was failing to leverage the strengths he'd developed growing up as a minority in the United States. After digging into the stories of successful Black leaders, he discovered some common threads to their leadership styles, including empathy, resilience and creative thinking, and he has advice for rising …



Chad Sanders, a former tech executive and entrepreneur, says that people of color, especially Black men like him, often feel the need to assimilate to white corporate culture. They learn to code switch and downplay their race. But Sanders realized a few years into his career that, by trying to fit in, he was failing to leverage the strengths he'd developed growing up as a minority in the United States. After digging into the stories of successful Black leaders, he discovered some common threads to their leadership styles, including empathy, resilience and creative thinking, and he has advice for rising Black executives who want to put those attributes to work as well as the organizations who employ them. Sanders is the author of "Black Magic: What Black Leaders Learned from Trauma and Triumph."