In the first part of our diversity series this month “Diversity: Benefits Vs Challenges“, we spoke briefly on some of the common benefits and challenges faced by companies in terms of employing workplace diversity. Essentially, research has shown that companies that are able to overcome barriers or challenges when it comes to diversity, will reap benefits such as effective execution and higher productivity, which ultimately, leads to greater profits. As an employer brand, you’ll have an easier time attracting and retaining talent as well.
So now that you’re ready to introduce and practice diversity, how and where do you start?
- Define and assess what diversity in the workplace means to you – Assessing and evaluating your diversity process an integral part of the process it helps lay the foundation of where you are now and where you wish to be in the future. To obtain accurate data, a customisable employee satisfaction survey can help accomplish this quickly and conveniently. Your management team can also help by determining which challenges and obstacles to diversity are currently present, and which policies need to be added or eliminated.
- Develop the plan – Unless you have in-house expertise on hand, you will need to choose a survey provider that provides comprehensive reporting. This is because the report will be the base structure of your diversity in the workplace plan. As such, it should be comprehensive, attainable and measurable. As you progress, your organisation must decide what changes should be adopted and any allowances or adjustments required in order for that to be achieved – be it in timeline or strategy – should be made.
- Implement the workplace plan – The personal commitment of executive and managerial teams is a must in order for implementation to succeed. Leaders and managers within organisations must incorporate diversity policies into every aspect of the organization’s function and purpose. Attitudes toward diversity originate at the top and filter downward, so leaders ideally should lead by example; management cooperation and participation is required to create a culture conducive to the success of your organisation’s plan.
Once you’ve laid the groundwork and come up with a suitable plan of attack, how do you overcome some of the challenges mentioned in my earlier blog? Here are some specific solutions that you can try:
Solution: Foster an attitude of openness in your organization. By encouraging employees to openly express and share suggestions, ideas and opinions, attributes a sense of equality and opens up the lines of communication to all.
Solution: To ward off resistance to change, simply practice inclusion. When you get every employee involved in every possible way when it comes to formulating and executing diversity initiatives in your workplace, people feel more in control and comfortable of their situation.
Solution: The best way to start implementing is to practice what you preach, from the top down. Promote diversity in leadership positions; this practice provides visibility and almost immediately produces results in terms of benefits diversity brings to the workplace.
Solution: There’s no point introducing policies without imparting the proper skills, and this is where you can utilise diversity training. You can use it as a tool to shape your diversity policy.
As the economy becomes increasingly global, your workforce will and needs to become increasingly diverse. Organisational success and competitiveness will depend on the ability to manage diversity in the workplace effectively. Start by evaluating and defining your company’s diversity policies and plan for the future. And there’s no time like the present to start, as a business’ success and competitiveness depends upon its ability to embrace change in order to realise the benefits.
If you’re looking to grow your team and diversity is of importance to you, feel free to connect with me here or visit our webpage to find out more. Expanding talent pipelines through diversity is not new; in fact it is essential for an industry that relies on people for its success to remain competitive, relevant and future-proof.
With a network of international offices and over a decade of experience, we know how to find the best people for your business. Whether it’s one person or a whole department, we manage everything from talent attraction to getting them on board. So if you want to chat to our team of specialists about way to create a more diverse team contact us today.
- Looking for people