The importance of Diversity & Inclusion

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First of all, let’s look at the definitions!
Diversity is any way that can be used to differentiate groups and people from one another. In essence it’s about empowering people by respecting and appreciating what makes them different, in terms of a whole range of things, which can include…age, gender, ethnicity, religion, disability, sexual orientation, education, and national origin.

In any organisation, we need a balance of opinions, ideas and decision making…Without that, we may overlook opportunities and our judgement might be clouded.

Inclusion is the organisation’s working practices to embrace diverse groups or individuals and for the collective good. People feel valued and general evidence shows that when people feel valued, they are fully engaged and contribute to the required high levels of motivation and morale which are so important to every business.

In summary…better decision making and motivated staff! What then has to happen?

To be fully effective, making sure that Diversity and Inclusion is part of the DNA in your organization, it has to be with “meaning and intent” and not a strap line. This means top down, bottom up, sideways and every which way.

Careful consideration of how to implement the strategy has to be taken…in many respects those words alone represent the challenge! It needs to be part of the culture and from everyone. There will be some that agree but have unconscious bias…without realizing they are making judgements and for the wrong reasons. This is an important part of peoples understanding.

The benefits of Diversity & Inclusion have to be understood by all.
All training courses…Leadership, Customer Service, etc. should have modules relating to the issues.
Leaders have to understand the expectations…similarly, all new recruits.

Consider how best to implement your policy and in a way that it’s there for all the right reasons, and with the use of “Ambassadors”. Use every opportunity to embrace the opportunity and soon you will recognise all of the benefits…while remembering…the journey never stops!

“Inclusion is not a matter of political correctness. It is the key to growth.”
Jesse Jackson