More diversity and inclusion in the workforce
is not the ‘nice’ thing to do,
it’s the ‘smart’ thing to do.
More diversity means more different perspectives on your workfloor. It means representation of more types of customers in your workforce and it leads to more innovation and better performance.
Better results can be reflected in products and services tailored to a broader range of customers. Having your product screened by for example people with a handicap or people with a migration background can suggest interesting alterations.
Better results can also show in less occupational accidents. An HR-director testifies: “we put stickers in eight languages and pictograms on our machines, because we have people speaking different languages as well as people with a handicap on our workfloor. In the end, it encouraged clearer communication among all our employees and makes for a safer workfloor.”
Everyone agrees - more diversity and inclusion can bring about better results - but there is a condition. Diverse teams need to be well managed. Different perspectives can also create challenges for collaboration, such as cultural resistance, communication barriers, overcoming negativity and building trust. To overcome these challenges, it’s important to create a clear team context with a code of conduct and community building. At the same time, effective communication with a joint language, cross-cultural awareness and a good feedback culture are imperative. Furthermore, it’s essential to build new competencies such as inclusive leadership skills and unconscious bias mitigation strategies. These are the priorities to establish an inclusive organizational culture. Without an inclusive culture, efforts to create diverse teams are in vain.
These are some of the insights shared during The Shift workshops in 2020. The next step in 2021 is to develop your own action plan – in order to implement more diversity and inclusion in your workforce. Therefore, The Shift is collaborating in the ‘Hands-on Inclusion’ partnership. Together with 12 partners in Flanders, Hands-on Inclusion is supporting employers to evolve to a more inclusive organization with how to recruit and retain diverse talents.
Why and how you create an inclusive organization, you will learn via practical bootcamps, individual coaching, screening of vacancies and much more. Hands-on Inclusion will provide you arguments, smart strategies and practical tools to develop your own action plan. Different offerings will be scheduled throughout 2021 and 2022. Stay tuned by registering for our newsletter or the one from HOI and we hope to welcome you there!