If you want your workforce to excel, diversity alone isn’t enough. Instead, you need to focus on creating an inclusive work environment, one where everyone feels confident and comfortable when expressing themselves.
Making inclusion part of your company’s culture isn’t going to happen on its own. Instead, leaders must take active steps to move toward it. If you are looking for ways to build a more inclusive work environment, here are some options worth pursuing.
Have Conversations About Race
While many companies shy away from openly discussing race, keeping the subject taboo can work against you. Without conversations, leaders can’t understand the concerns many of their employees may have. Additionally, they can’t learn from their workforce’s past experiences, something that can provide them with insights that make it easier to avoid missteps.
Ideally, the conversations should be initiated tactfully, and the focus should be on creating a safe space where all employees can express their thoughts and share their perspectives. With the right mindset, workers can learn from one another, empowering them all to be more mindful moving forward.
Make Use of Data Analytics
Systemic issues aren’t always apparent on the surface. This is especially true for companies that have diversity and inclusion programs, as leaders may feel that those efforts are enough for overcoming any woes.
However, issues of inequality can run deep. But, by using data analytics, you can assess fairness in your workplace. For example, you can determine whether certain demographics are getting access to more opportunities than others. You can also search for engagement issues, something that could indicate a systemic problem is hindering performance or harming morale.
Offer Training to Combat Bias
Bias in hiring and advancement is incredibly damaging. While it may, at times, be intentional, unconscious bias can also play a role. Many managers instinctively choose candidates that remind them of themselves in some way, leading to less diversity overall.
However, when managers are trained to recognize their unconscious biases, they can actively fight against them. They may identify problematic patterns in their own thinking, empowering them to overcome them.
Allow Employees to Be Authentic
Many professionals feel that they need to conform to be accepted at work. That makes the environment feel less inclusive, as many of your employees aren’t being their full, authentic selves.
Ideally, companies should create opportunities for workers to be how they are without fear of being ostracized. Finding opportunities to celebrate people’s backgrounds and cultures can be a great start, such as through informal get-togethers focused on a specific theme. Not only can these events celebrate diversity, but they also promote social bonding. In time, this makes the workplace feel more inclusive as, when people get to know one another, they typically feel safer being authentic.
Ultimately, all of the tips above can help your company build a more inclusive work environment. If you’d like to know more, the skilled team at GSG Talent Solutions wants to hear from you. Contact us today and see how our diversity and inclusion expertise can benefit you.