Diversity and Inclusion in the workplace
Diversity and inclusion in the workplace goes beyond the task of hiring staff of different ethnic backgrounds, gender, age groups and skill sets. In increasingly diverse and professional communities worldwide it’s still surprising that many organizations find the process complicated. Here are three fundamental tips for companies looking to diversify.
Creating and inclusive workplace is a process that starts with allowing staff to show up to work as their authentic selves. Now, there is much misconception around the meaning of “your authentic self” in the workplace. Let’s clear up the misunderstanding.
What it really means is to create conditions where they feel free to show off their strengths, be confident and feel like they belong. No, you don’t want to see “all” of them but you want to see the side of them that matters most to the role and the workplace, but companies need to make provision for that.
The second and probably the most important component in this process is to let go (or at least reduce) of unconscious an conscious biases. Very often we are blinded by our own stereotypes that can hinder the hiring process and decision-making immensely.
They key is to have a bias-free criteria for qualifications and performance as well as promotion, that is based on who employees are and how they perform and make decisions based on that. It is also important to encourage dialogue and perhaps even anonymous feedback so that companies can measure whether they’re on the right track.
And finally, diversity and inclusion strategies need to be integrated into the hiring process. This way companies can assure employees that different backgrounds, race, gender, age matter to the company, not only for the purposes of diversification but because they meet the criteria for the roles.
Another important factor to bear in mind is that leaders need to be made accountable for the values of the organization as they set the tone and the benchmark for company culture.
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