"If you have come here to help me you are wasting your time.
But if you have come because your liberation is bound up with mine then let us work together"
Lila Watson - Australian Activist and Scholar
Paradox Cross-Cultural Consulting, Training & Empowerment LLC
Paradox consulting, training and coaching services support teams, groups and organizations in education, counseling and faith-based professions. We recognize the need to first understand how the problem manifests in workplaces before trying to resolve it. The framework for all services are structured in adaptive and relational leadership theories. Our trauma-informed approach follows a three-part conceptual stage model of change (Barrett & Stone Fish, 2014). Our knowledge is grounded in critical race, anti-racism, and critical discourse theories and whiteness studies. We offer four broad services that support racial/social justice leadership development and efforts:
You Can’t Fix What You Don’t or Won’t See – Paradox Identifies and Interrogates Patterns of Dominance
Through analysis and diagnosis, we make explicit what is implicit. Data from my research found that racial dominance in discourse silences conversations, supports willful avoidance, and thus allows its presence to remain unchallenged, without intent. Racial dominance controls who can say what, when, about what, and about who.
Paradox examines the ways racial dominance is (re)produced and maintained in everyday professional interactions, and in workplace processes, policies, curriculums, etc.
We help expose, deconstruct, and name patterns and processes that impede progress
Many of Us Don’t Know How to Talk About Race – Paradox Helps Groups Develop Emotional Capacity and Create Environmental Space for Generative Racial Dialogue
We help groups and organizations develop skills, create resources, and build capacity for sustained racial justice efforts. Research data from my focus group supported four vital capacities for generative racial dialogue: 1) Readiness/Willingness; 2) Vulnerability; 3) Adaptability; and, 4) Liberating dialogic environment. These capacities are the framework of our dialogic work with groups.
Honoring our collective humanity and prioritizing the dignity of all is at the core of our dialogue practices
Racial Justice and Wounded Organizations
The work of Vivian and Hormann (2015) suggests that all organizations likely have dysfunctional patterns, and that “trauma-genic organizational cultures, cultures that reproduce traumatizing dynamics and circumstances so that the entity never completely heals from traumatic events, exacerbate that dysfunction” (p. 25). Wounded organizations create cultures that harbor the effects of unhealed traumatic race-related events and perpetual historic racial traumatization.
Justice Efforts by Leaders with Unexamined and Unacknowledged Racialized Trauma Maintain the Cycle of Violence – Our Wounded Leaders Program Supports the Healing of Racial Justice Leaders
We help organizations explore and identify the ways in which racial dominance, trauma and stress harms and limits us all and impedes with the work of racial justice. Countless relationships and justice efforts are subjected to multiple forms of (re)injury when we enter the work of racial justice with “well-meaning” and “good intent” as our primary motivations.
All of us – regardless of race – come to the work of racial justice with historic, collective, and individual wounds that often results in the reproduction of the very dynamics we seek to end.
Paradox uncovers the ways racial dominance, trauma, stress, distrust, and other numerous unnamed injuries impact interpersonal relationships and obstruct racial justice efforts.
“The most profound discovery in my research was stumbling upon my own spiritual liberation found in the shadowy depths of racial power abuse. Gaining a deeper understanding of racial dominance and witnessing its behavior and impact literally freed me from its grips of shame.” Cherie Bridges Patrick