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Diversity and Inclusion

Post date: 
05 April 2018
Category: 
People & Culture

The underlying truth behind inclusion and diversity

Diversity encompasses race, gender, ethnic group, age, personality, cognitive style, tenure, organizational function, education, background and more.

Diversity not only involves how people perceive themselves, it is also how they perceive others. These perceptions affect their interactions. Building on diversity means recognising that each person has unique strengths. Teams who perform and deliver on their strengths deliver high performance—together. Inclusion and diversity are fundamental to an organisations culture and values. No one should be discriminated against because of their differences, such as age, disability, ethnicity, gender, gender identity and expression, religion or sexual orientation.

Research shows:

  • Gender-diverse companies are 15% more likely to outperform their peers and ethnically-diverse companies are 35% more likely to do the same.
  • Companies with more women on the board statistically outperform their peers over time.
  • Inclusive teams out-perform their peers by 80% in team-based assessments.

The need for more inclusion & diversity

There is an increased awareness that there are many talented people who do not fit the stereotypical norm of ‘someone with high potential.’ As our society becomes more multi-cultural the leaders of the future may not come from the same mould as the leader of today.

The world is changing at an alarming rate and our workforce is changing.

For the first time in history we have 4 generations working side by side

There are vast differences in these generations such as familiarity with technology, communication and work ethic.

 

Benefits of Workplace Diversity

An organisation’s success and competitiveness depends upon its ability to embrace diversity and realize and capitalize on its benefits. When organisations actively assess their handling of workplace diversity issues, develop and implement diversity plans, multiple benefits are reported including:

  1. Increased adaptability - Organisations employing a diverse workforce can supply a greater variety of solutions to problems in service, sourcing, and allocation of resources. Employees from diverse backgrounds bring individual talents and experiences in suggesting ideas that are flexible in adapting to fluctuating markets and customer demands.
  2. Broader service range - A diverse collection of skills and experiences (e.g. languages, cultural understanding) allows a company to provide service to customers on a global basis.
  3. Variety of viewpoints - A diverse workforce that feels comfortable communicating varying points of view provides a larger pool of ideas and experiences. The organisation can draw from that pool to meet business strategy needs and the needs of customers more effectively.
  4. More effective execution - Companies that encourage diversity in the workplace inspire all their employees to perform to their highest ability. Company-wide strategies can then be executed; resulting in higher productivity, profit, and returns on investment.

Tips to increase Diversity and Inclusion in your workplace

  1. Measure it – remember that which gets measured gets done – when it comes to recruitment, working groups and project teams – go outside the norm and recruit for diversity and strengths
  2. Remember diversity is more than race – Different religious backgrounds, different genders, different nationalities, different ways of thinking and differing physical abilities provide more diversity options.
  3. Recruit over a broader geographic area - By expanding the geographic scope of your recruiting, you’ll reach more potential candidates.
  4. Foster diversity at all levels, not just in hiring. If the workplace culture is not diverse at the upper levels, there will be less of a chance of retaining diversity in general. If all employees don’t see they have an opportunity to achieve their personal goals, they may be more likely to leave.
  5. Implement flexible working. consider whether any jobs could be completed via telecommuting or whether you can offer benefits that help people back to the workforce while still taking care of their family, such as flexible work schedules or on-site child care

Tips for you personally

  1. Pause and reflect on whether your communication is inclusive of all cultures, age groups, communication styles
  2. Take the time to listen and understand people that might communicate differently to you
  3. Build your awareness of body language and gestures and how they are different across cultures

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