Inclusivity in 2018: building a diverse workforce

“Diversity” and “Inclusivity” are big buzz terms for organizations in 2018 and progressive leaders are being pushed to look at their teams from a new perspective.

Representing the majority isn’t enough anymore, for an organization to be truly contemporary, all cross sections of humanity need to have equal opportunity. But as we strive for a more integrated workplace, what does that actually mean? We can hire with diversity in mind, but how to do we build a culture where everyone, specifically under-represented people, can come together and feel safe, supported and heard.

Forbes Magazine recently posted, What does inclusion really look like in the workplace? Which suggests using gender neutral language in company policy papers, such as the pronoun “they”.  They remark that diversity in the workforce is not enough, the leadership team also needs to reflect the companies values and balance the playing field. Nursing spaces for mothers and alcohol-free activities are other suggestion, bringing to point the practical aspects of implementing a truly inclusive environment. magazine cites diversity in the workforce as “imperative” and essential for organizations to stay innovative, be connected to their market and make the most of the talent in the workforce.

Alongside a practical, organizational shift, individuals will have to address any unconscious bias that may exist towards specific groups of people. Policies help, but if a marginalized person is experiencing micro-aggressions or harassment, the company must support the person experiencing abuse and offer education those who are challenged by biases that formerly were part of the status quo. This means an organization must be willing to shift their traditions and be open to new narratives and perspectives. Check out Allie Kelley article: What does diversity in the workplace actually mean? for more suggestions on this issue.

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