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Issue #25 - "Step-ball-change" via Code Switching

Elizabeth M. Lembke - Chief Talent Navigator (HR Consultant)
Elizabeth M. Lembke - Chief Talent Navigator (HR Consultant)
According to the Oxford English dictionary, the verb code-switching is a linguistic term to “alternate between two or more languages or varieties of language in conversation. To note: ‘As with any social behaviour, we pick up linguistic norms and learn to code-switch according to context’.”
Code-switching illustrated: “business jargon”, “talking vanilla”, “trolling”, “hanging out”, “nose bouquet, "inside voice”, LBD, ***
In the past 10 years or so, code-switching has often been used to describe how a person adjusts their behaviours, looks, language, approaches etc. to accommodate to a broader norm of a different social group. Why? Usually to gain approval/acceptance and/or to avoid grief.
Code-switching is not per say either good or bad - rather it is a learned coping mechanism to deal with particular social interactions.
Why should we care about it?
In the Armchair Expert podcast interview with Wendy Mogel, the author and child psychologist explains how the expectations of many parents are so high that many do not actualize how exhausting the constant code-switching for their kids really is. Wendy states that many parents are much more forgiving of their pets then they are of their own children. A friend of mine used to say “I have to remind myself that my kid is not a trained monkey. Just because I want him to - does not mean he will.”
As we look to the topics of inclusion, creating brave spaces and celebrating our own unique voice - how are we asking others to code-switch for us? Conversely, how are we self-editing? As leaders, how are we conscious of creating environments where different behaviours or approaches are not only tolerated but truly given space to develop? Like JP Sears says in his inspired Goalcast: the most pervasive disease to hit humanity is the disease of “being normal”.
In other words:

How does code-switching affect innovation, collaboration and engagement?
How does code-switching affect innovation, collaboration and engagement?
What is code-switching and why do we do it?
How Do We Code-Switch Every Day?
Code-Switching at Work
Professionalism in the workplace is about code-switching | The Context Of Things
Learning How To Code-Switch: Humbling, But Necessary: NPR
Code Switching Solves Workplace Communication in 2020 | Psychology Today
Social Implications and Bias
What It Means If You’re Code-Switching in the Workplace - Essence
Young Women Spill On What Code-Switching At Work Is Really Like
The Cost of Code Switching | Chandra Arthur | TEDxOrlando
Question: What are some of the codes at your work?
How does code-switching play a role in your organization? If the topics of collaboration, innovation and involvement are on your agenda, I would love to talk to you about ways to foster supportive environments. Just give me a call or drop me an email.
Have a topic that is on your mind or have come across an item that is worth sharing? Awesome! Just let me know and we will share it in a future edition of Transforming Talent Insights!
Thanks everyone!
All my best regards,
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Elizabeth M. Lembke - Chief Talent Navigator (HR Consultant)
Elizabeth M. Lembke - Chief Talent Navigator (HR Consultant) @elizabethlembke

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Elizabeth Lembke, Transforming Talent Consulting: and