The importance of diversity and inclusion in the workplace has been proven time and time again. McKinsey’s Delivering Through Diversity Report found that gender and ethnic diversity directly correlate to profitability. Another study of over 350 Fortune 500 companies found a connection between corporate performance and gender diversity. So what can you do to make your company’s culture a more diverse and inclusive one, ultimately leading to more success? Check out a few of our tips on how to create a more diverse workplace:
Create More Positive Connections
One of the biggest reasons people reject things that are different is because of fear. This does nothing to help inclusion in the workplace. Do everything you can to create positive connections between your employees. Truly celebrate when the team accomplishes something and call attention to the fact that they were able to come together. Seeing how the inclusiveness directly relates to results will erase any fear people may have had.
Make Everyone Feel Like They Belong (Because They Do!)
Just hiring a diverse group of people isn’t enough. Remember, it’s diversity AND inclusion. There needs to be a sense of belonging in your culture. People should not have to change who they are to fit in, so make sure you’re creating a space where people can be themselves. This is an ongoing process that might require various approaches, so consult others for best practices and see what adjustments can be made.
It Starts At The Top, But Doesn’t Stop There
Building an inclusive workplace and culture is not solely the responsibility of human resources. In fact, it is not solely the responsibility of anyone’s. It is everyone’s responsibility to play a part in creating a culture of belonging. It starts with an understanding from leadership and continues through each employee across the organization.
Avoid Gender-Biased Words
Do your job descriptions contain gender-biased language? If so, it could limit the talent that is attracted to your organization. For example, using words that are often associated with masculinity, such as “dominant” and “aggressive,” may discourage women and LGBTQ+ candidates from applying to your job listings. On the other hand, words associated with femininity, such as “nurturing” and “supportive,” might discourage male candidates. Consider replacing these words with gender-neutral adjectives. This is a key element in creating diversity in the workplace, as it can help attract a well-balanced pool of applicants.
Acknowledge a Range of Holidays
Creating an inclusive work environment means hiring people from all walks of life. For this reason, why not include a variety of religious and cultural holidays in your company calendar? From International Women’s Day and Gay Pride Week to Eid and Cinco De Mayo, observing diverse celebrations in the workplace can help employees feel honored and valued. It allows them to celebrate their differences and helps colleagues share cultures. Consider organizing potlucks, book clubs, parties, meetings and business lunches around these events.
Broaden Your Recruitment Efforts
Have you considered expanding the company’s global reach to boost your talent pool? For instance, hiring international workers from different regions/countries could introduce unique perspectives, work ethics and ideas to your organization. This may help bolster collaboration and creativity in new ways and, ultimately, build a more fulfilling workplace for all employees.
Create an Accessible Workplace
When you think of how to foster an inclusive work environment, does accessibility come to mind? Diversity and inclusion extend beyond the categories of race, gender and sexual orientation. Can disabled employees or visitors who need devices such as walkers, wheelchairs or canes get around the office easily? It is important to create and outfit spaces that are not only welcoming but functional for everyone.
Are you ready to create real change in your workplace? CoachDiversity Institute works with forward-thinking corporations, foundations, nonprofit organizations, and government entities who are ready to challenge how diversity training has been implemented in the past. We offer customized, in-house coaching with DEI as a framework, as well as one-on-one executive coaching. Contact us today to learn more about how to create diversity in the workplace.