Inclusion and diversity have become the focus of corporate culture due to various reasons. Acceptance of employees based on their talents, irrespective of any other classification, is enabling businesses to cement their reputation amongst stakeholders. Through diversity and inclusion, organizations don’t just strengthen their own teams but also portray a progressive image of their brand which ultimately creates sustainability.
However, although many businesses and corporate entities are accepting these values as part of their culture, there is still a long way to go for the overall perception to change. Organizations that are looking to transform in line with changing times must accept all kinds of employees with open arms, William Schantz notes. This allows them to become more competitive and productive in markets where technology is making the game harder to play with each passing day.
1. Begin by Following these Practices as Core Values
Diversity and inclusion must encompass all segments of the population from women to the differently-abled. This is only possible through instilling these principles into the core values of the organization. Core values of the company direct the organization in terms of their mission, vision and objectives. When employees understand these values and they are integrated from the top down, the culture becomes more open and productive.
2. Educate Employees
Many a time, employees themselves are the greatest resistance when it comes to building diverse and all-inclusive workplace environments. Educating employees in this regard can make a lot of difference. Schantz underlines that when employees understand the benefits and are taught about how the right skill sets should be accepted without discrimination, their perceptions and mindsets change significantly. Therefore, educating employees in this regard holds top priority.
3. Highlight the People You Employ
Showcasing the right talents that are housed within an organization can help reshape the image of a company. Businesses should not be afraid of highlighting the people they employ beyond any differences. Among other benefits, doing so will help influence stakeholders. Companies should make it a practice to highlight their employees.
4. Focus on Community Building
Organizations can integrate a diverse set of talents within their team but as long as the synchronization amongst employees is not present, things will not work out effectively. For this, community-building holds the utmost importance. Training sessions, subtle messaging and employee resource groups can help achieve this objective. Companies should easily allow access to this knowledge base and ensure that employees take advantage of it, according to William Schantz.
5. Rather Than Making the Employee Fit into a Culture, Work the Other Way Around
During the recruitment process, organizations look for a personality that will fit their culture. However, companies that are looking to build diverse and inclusive cultures must work vice versa. The culture can be made to fit new and upcoming employees rather than the other way around. Women, socially challenged individuals or other people should be widely accepted with the workplace environment being made to fit them.
With progressive organizations being the only ones to sustain themselves in these uncertain times, it is crucial for both emerging and established businesses to accept these values and inculcate them into their culture. This can be done through education, mentoring, and community-building in an effective manner, as explained above through insights from William Schantz.