04/06/2022 | by
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1315_REITwise_James Pogue_2022-03-31_v2

Dr. James Pogue, CEO of JP Enterprises, participated in a video interview during REITwise 2022: Nareit's Law, Accounting & Finance Conference held in Orlando, Florida on March 23-25.

Pogue was a keynote speaker at REITwise, with a presentation titled DEI: Measuring Progress. Improving Performance. Increasing Productivity.

In the post-pandemic environment, Pogue said companies should be considering their inclusion efforts moving forward as they seek to regrow their companies and rehire staff.

Pogue commented on how to get people to open up about their DEI journey and overcome some of the existing barriers and challenges. “Most people want to open up about it , they just haven’t been provided with a reasonable opportunity to do so,” he said.

Meanwhile, Pogue urged leaders to remain open-minded in the pursuit of talent.

“There’s a lot of people, a lot of brains, a lot of talent that comes wrapped in different skin, that comes wrapped in different sexualities, that comes wrapped in different ages. Do you want to be competitive for all the talent or just the talent you’re most closely aligned with?” Pogue said.

As for how an organization should get started on addressing DEI issues, Pogue recommended the need for an initial assessment. After that, it is important to execute on strategic recommendations—which must be long-term, he stressed.

Pogue also discussed why a leader-led approach to DEI is so important.

“We have to treat this inclusion business with the same dignity and respect as we do other areas of professionalism…you need not be an expert in diversity or inclusion or bias to lead it…leaders can make this happen, we just have to lean into it in a significant way,” Pogue said.

As a judge for this year’s Nareit DEI Awards, Pogue also said the entries revealed that “there’s a lot of good work that’s happening, there’s a lot of passion.”