Building Inclusion and Belonging with Whistle
During WW II, The U.S. army was still segregated, and only whites served in combat roles. When there were not enough white men, General Dwight Eisenhower recruited black volunteers to join the ranks. Sociologist Samuel Stouffer, the head of the Army’s Information and Education Division’s Research Branch, found that white soldiers who had been stationed alongside black soldiers held more positive attitudes towards black soldiers, including a greater willingness to work with them in the future. He concluded that working alongside one another as equals in combat led white soldiers to begin seeing black soldiers as “ingroup members” as opposed to having their previous “us vs. them” mindset. This finding was echoed again in the famous Robbers’ Cave studies where feuding groups of campers only developed real, voluntary friendships when they were forced to work together on common goals.
When all the science indicates that bringing people together is more effective than telling people how to behave, why are companies still investing so much money on training and so little on programs to build real connection?
Building Inclusion and Belonging with Whistle looks at new ways to build a sense of inclusion and belonging in the modern workplace and explains why they are more effective than training at increasing belonging and business success.