From a business perspective, human beings come in just one color: green. They either represent money to be made or money to be saved. If you think of people in any other way in your professional life, you deserve to fail and fail miserably, because you are letting a personal prejudice get in the way of making money.

That is not to say that people don’t come in various shades of green. Each shade represents a customer’s or employee’s potential monetary value. And don’t think small, here: a given customer may not be in a position to purchase much from you now, but that may change, in time. They may also be a champion for your business and introduce you to their friends. An employee can become more valuable through internal or external training and experiences that affect their personal results and the results of others with whom they share their new knowledge. They (and external customers) can also suggest better ways to do things, saving you money.

Does this mean that we should not be aware of and posture our language, gestures, and approach to internal and external customers based on their various cultures? Of course not! Aside from being poor business practice and pulling money right out of your pocket (perhaps even your entire business or organization), that is just plain rude. (What would your mother say about that?)

But it does mean that we don’t make assumptions about someone’s ability to be or to generate revenue based on their appearance. This includes color, gender, sexual orientation, age, nationality, religion, politics, and beauty (an important point; remember, we are hard-wired to select for people that are attractive, even if they perform poorly).

Everyone is a customer, at some point. EVERYONE. Remember that.

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