Early in my career, as a bank management trainee, I sat in the lunch room taking a break with another young teller. As we munched on our food she looked at me and said, “Is Mexico beautiful?”
I was confused, but responded “that being such a large country, I was certain it was beautiful.”
She then asked “if it was hard to speak Mexican.”
Pause… Very pregnant pause.
Now, I was completely lost. And a bit offended, until I realized she was not being offensive but was simply ignorant. I often share this story as the segue to discuss the intricacies of the Latino culture, especially now, during Hispanic Heritage Month. Amigos, Hispanic Heritage Month is here, Sept. 15-Oct. 15, and I recommend you leverage this period as a catalyst to learn and engage. Attend a festival, eat at a new restaurant, do a tour of the Smithsonian Latino Virtual Museum. And continue to incorporate these activities the rest of the year.
Veronica Cool is founder of Cool & Associates LLC, a business management firm specializing in financial wellness and diverse segment marketing. Her column appears twice a month in The Daily Record and online. Contact her at Veronica@CoolAssociatesLLC.com. Follow her on Twitter at @verocool.
*This article was originally posted on The Daily Record.