Diversity and Inclusion in the Workplace: Strategies for Success
Diversity and inclusion in the workplace is a very important element for the organization’s greater good. Diversity and inclusion, which is popularly known as D&I, is gaining rapid momentum in the corporate sectors.
“Companies that embrace diversity and inclusion in all aspects of their business statistically outperform their peers.”
– Josh Bersin.
However, diversifying your workplace is a lot more than just following ethics and morals within the organization. It is also a determining force of revenue, growth, and profit.
So, if you want to learn more about diversity and inclusion in the workplace and implement it in your organization as soon as possible, you are here at the right place.
In this article, we will explore all the aspects of diversity and inclusion and how to successfully implement it in different organizations.
So, without any further delay, let us get started.
What Is Diversity And Inclusion In The Workplace?
Diversity and inclusion is a concept where a given set of strategies, missions, and policies are adopted by organizations to build and encourage an inclusive atmosphere in the workplace that attracts a diverse range of talent belonging to different cultural backgrounds.
Besides having several business advantages, diversity and inclusion practices and policies are generally more supportive and creative for diverse voices, attracting the topmost talents within any industry.
When used, diversity and inclusion are paired together as a jointed word; however, both are two different words that have completely different meanings and purposes.
So, let us now individually understand both the concepts and their purposes.
What Is Known As Diversity?
In simple words, diversity is defined as the “full spectrum of human differences.” It refers to the varied and unique personalities and characteristics among people based on their gender, age, sexual orientation, ethnicities, religious beliefs, races, cultures, geographical locations, physical abilities, etc.
Diversity in the workplace refers to the workforce in an organization composed of different people from diverse backgrounds, including genders, religions, sexual orientations, ethnicities, races, ages, etc.
Diversity in the workplace has four main types or categories.
The types of diversity include:
- Internal Diversity
- External Diversity
- Organizational Diversity
- World View Diversity
What Is Known As Inclusion?
“Inclusion is not a matter of political correctness. It is the key to growth.”
— Jesse Jackson, Politician and Civil Rights Activist.
SHRM explains inclusion as
“the achievement of a work environment in which all individuals are treated fairly and respectfully, have equal access to opportunities and resources, and can contribute fully to the organization’s success.”
Inclusion in the organization means making sure that each and every employee working in the organization feels included in the team. A workforce that feels inclusive will automatically feel valued, heard, seen, and respected. Additionally, there will be a visible boost in innovations, increased employee engagement, and higher cooperation.
Difference Between Diversity And Inclusion In the Workplace
Now that I have individually explained each of the concepts, it must be clear to you that both concepts are far from being similar or interchangeable.
Diversity focuses on representing or making up an entity. On the other hand, inclusion focuses on how well the presence, contributions, and perspectives of different individuals have blended together in an environment that works together in an organization.
A work environment where multiple people with different races, genders, nationalities, and sexual orientations or identities work together, but only the opinions or thoughts of one particular group are taken into account may be termed as diverse but never inclusive.
Importance Of Diversity And Inclusion In The Workplace
Practicing diversity and inclusion in an organization promotes a healthy working atmosphere. Growth and development of and within the organization come to a standstill if the workforce is not diverse enough and employees likely feel like the organization is not inclusive of their presence.
No organization has ever been able to grow with just people of the same kind. Also, that does not look very appealing to the public either. For instance, if a company that is not diverse enough is looking for a new manager, and one of the best in town is looking for a job, because of the lack of diversity within the company, the candidate refrains from applying for the job role. This will end up being a mentionable loss for the organization.
On the other hand, being diverse will not do the job. What is the point of having a diverse workforce if the organization is not taking the words or opinions of what others have to say?
Being a person of color, I can never be a part of an organization where my thoughts go unheard.
A lack of inclusion within an organization makes the employees uninterested, demotivated, and enthusiastic to work and results in employee turnover.
However, implementing both diversity and inclusivity in the workplace can bring about multiple benefits to the organization in the long term. Some of those benefits may include:
- An increase in the revenue growth
- More openness to change
- An increase in the ability to recruit a diversified pool of talent
- A higher percentage of employee retention
Examples Of Diversity And Inclusion In The Workplace
Implementing diversity and inclusion in the workplace can come in various forms. Some of the examples may include:
- Celebrating different holidays and significant dates for different groups of employees.
- A statement or an addressed letter to employees from the senior leaders or the CEO of the company.
- Building mentorship programs for underrepresented employee groups.
- Promoting the diversity and inclusivity of the organization by consistently posting content of the same on the company website or its social channels.
- Revising the employee value proposition to focus more on the DEI model.
The Pillars Of Diversity And Inclusion In The Workplace
To cultivate and promote diversity and inclusivity in an organization, it is necessary to have a prototype that gives clear guidance on the efforts of the organization.
These are the four so-called pillars that every organization must include in their diversity and inclusion strategies:
Diversity and inclusion in the workplace is one of the key elements that contribute to the growth and development of the organization.
Therefore, no organization must take the concepts lightly as that will make them end up in grave trouble. And in this era of corporate growth, no organization must take the risk under any circumstances.