Building Systems of Inclusion and Diversity

inclusion and diverse team working together, header image

Employees at companies with inclusion are 50% less likely to quit. Along with this, they are likely to be more productive and happier overall.

Making diversity and inclusion a priority in the workplace is crucial, especially if you’re looking to keep your workplace lively and vigorous.

No matter what your background is, you can build systems that encourage an inclusive environment. To learn more about how to go about creating an inclusive workforce, keep reading. We’ll discuss what diversity and inclusion entail and how you can create a culture of diversity and inclusion in your workplace. 

What Are Diversity and Inclusion?

Understanding the differences and similarities between the term “diversity” and the term “inclusion” is important before getting started. The terms are often used together, but they do indicate different ideas. Many organizations fail at creating diverse and inclusive cultures because they’re missing one of the two aspects. To ensure that you’re including both, make sure to read about the difference. We’ll also discuss how these ideas work together.

What Is Diversity?

A diverse workplace refers to an organization that employs people from different diversity dimensions  in order to come together to achieve common goals. The most common dimensions in which bias or discrimination creates an exclusive workplace are are sex, gender, race, ethnicity, national origin, religion, age, ability, and socioeconomic status. Diverse workplaces reflect the community in which they are located, the community that is targeted for customers, and the community that the organization envisions to be an ideal state for executing the mission of the organization and exuding the organization’s values.

Organizations must define what diversity means to them, and if there’s no systems in place for D & I, they should take the first steps, in forming a plan to create inclusive systems.

What Is Inclusion? The Introduction of "E"

Inclusion in the workplace refers to an organization that treats all its employees fairly. Note that this does not necessarily mean that everyone is treated equally. Rather, equitability or equity, is a feature of inclusion. That intersectional diversity is acknowledged, inequity in opportunities are addressed, and consensus is built around the need to continue improvement indefinitely.

In an inclusive workplace, everyone is given dignity and respect, and have the same resources to be able to contribute to the organization. If this sounds like a fantasy, your organization needs to improve inclusivity, and civility.

In a nutshell, inclusive workplaces allow everyone a chance to shine by granting a level field for everyone to work from. However, some employees may need accommodations to reach the same level as everyone else, otherwise org roles should be redesigned to remove inherent barriers what require accommodations in the first place.

What Are the Differences Between Diversity and Inclusion? The Introduction of "B"

Diversity refers to traits and characteristics that make people different or similar to each other, while inclusion refers to the level of commitment an organization has to promoting diversity throughout the organization. Belonging an outcome of a high level of inclusion and diversity.

Belonging refers to behaviors that allow people of all backgrounds and diversities to feel welcome in a work environment.

The two should work together to create the best work environment for all kinds and types of people. Excluding one term from the other only leads to tough social issues. This is why you need to foster programs that enrich both.

How Can I Create Systems of Inclusion?

If you’re looking to create a workplace of inclusion and diversity, creating systems is critical.

If you dive in without creating systems, you set yourself up for failure. It does take time and you will most likely never have a foolproof social environment, but you can come continuously closer to your idea state.

However, we have a few tips that will help you get to a more diverse and inclusive workplace. Keep reading to get started on the journey to a happier workforce.

Educate Your Organization's Leaders and Put them in the Driver's Seat

All workplaces have a few employees that stand out, whether they’re given the job title of a leader or not. Whoever these standout people are, they’re critical to ensuring that your workplace can thrive with a new culture.

The number one thing that you should do before trying to implement new policies is to educate these leaders. If you and/or your team or leaders go into this blind, you may end up hurting your organization more than helping it.

Education about diversity and inclusion is important. This is going to be one of the best investments for your office in the long-term.

Diversity and Inclusion Council

Many organizations these days have some kind of group that handles diversity and inclusion issues. This council can work on developing an inclusive workforce while handling any issues that may arise.

When you’re choosing your council, you should make sure that its members are diverse and inclusive themselves. Otherwise, the council may not be as effective as you may want.

Overall, this council would be a group of inclusive warriors who will help your company transition to a more accepting culture. Having this team with you could be the key to successfully implementing diversity programs.

Recognition Systems

Some people are scared of recognizing differences because they are afraid that it will come off negatively. However, these differences should be recognized and even celebrated.

Recognizing that two employees are different only seeks to express their individuality. As long as you’re being positive and accommodating, there is nothing wrong with differences.

If you’re looking to go the extra mile, you should express these differences across the workplace. Listen to your employees and ask them if there are any accommodations that you can make. These could include a prayer room, days off for religious holidays, a change in the dress code, or an office party for a certain nation’s independence.

Of course, these requests should stay reasonable, but you’ll find that most of them will be reasonable, understandable, and perhaps even fun.

Who Can Help Me Build a Diverse and Inclusive Workplace?

Navigating diversity and inclusion can be difficult, especially if you haven’t done programs like these before. If this is you, our team at Poprouser may be able to help.

We can help your office implement a diverse and inclusive program that is bound to excite your employees and build broad consensus in the need to make the workplace safe and equitable for team members, and challenging in the right wayContact us today to set us a discovery session for your organization.

As you’re embarking on the creation of a more tolerant workplace, keep in mind that you’re starting a long-term journey. With some patience from you and some help from us, your workplace will be able to sustain a culture of diversity and inclusion.

Are Your Employees Empowered to Use Their best Talents?

Create a culture of inclusion and empower your employees to reach their full potential. Contact us to learn how we can help you build a more diverse, equitable, and inclusive workplace.

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Cody Bess