Diversity and Inclusion….

What’s it all about!? Listen here

In the modern world, it’s a phrase that is ever more used, and also worth explaining as we head towards International Women’s Day on Tuesday 8th March.

While the phrase is increasingly prevalent in the workplace (and in life in general), what is the defining definition?

Promoting and supporting diversity in the workplace is a vital part of having true people values in place within your business. We are all subtly different…we are all unique…just think of our fingerprints! No one is truly alike. I have twin boys aged twenty-seven, yet they are five inches different in height!

Diversity and Inclusion is about valuing everyone in the workplace as an individual. That may sound simplistic but to really make a success it’s vital to have an inclusive environment where everyone feels able to participate and achieve their potential. The word potential is vital. We never truly know what anyone is capable of unless each person is given a chance…a hidden talent, an amazing idea…all lying dormant until that chance is given.
Let’s not even consider legislation…we need to make diversity and inclusion a thing of the past and where everyone is equal…as simple as that! While that may sound over simplistic, a few pointers to bear in mind…

  • That we need to understand that a diverse workforce needs an inclusive environment to flourish, and not one with potential barriers
  • That the policy needs to be top down and bottom up, ensuring that initiatives and policies have the support of the board and senior management.
  • That managing diversity and developing a culture of inclusion is a continuous process of improvement, not a one-off initiative.
  • That we must develop a strategy to support the achievement of business goals, including ways of addressing the diverse needs of customers.

Every person within the business is responsible, and without exception, meaning we must train all employees to understand and engage with inclusion in how they do their jobs and work with colleagues.
You may not be getting the best from your people if you fail to have the correct policies & procedures in place!

Inclusivity means not ‘just we’re allowed to be there,’ but we are valued. I’ve always said: smart teams will do amazing things, but truly diverse teams will do impossible things.

 Claudia Brind-Woody