In today’s modern society, this seems like a question with such obvious answers, that we might wonder why we’re even asking it!
However, we should remind ourselves why we must constantly strive to recruit and maintain a diverse workplace and the benefits it can bring us. Here are some of the key aspects of company culture and processes that we should be reviewing if we truly want an inclusive workplace.
1. Create more positive working relationships
A team with positive working relationships will be more productive, engaged and focused, it will also make work a nicer place to be for everyone. So ask yourself what sort of culture have you created in your team? Do the team ever suffer from presenteeism? Look for the signs of short term absences and patterns of sickness and work to keep your team happy and motivated.
2. Greater productivity within your team
Consider how YOU feel when you go into work. Do you set the correct tone for your team? Be aware of the impact that your entrance on a Monday morning can have on the team. Do you smile and greet the team with a friendly ‘Good morning’ or avoid eye contact and grumble?
3. Increased performance
Productivity is crucial to any organisation. When an organisation is made up of diverse employees, they are likely to see an increase in workplace productivity. A 2013 report by Deloitte concluded that when employees think their organisation is committed to and supportive of diversity their ability to innovate increases by 83%.
Let’s explore why this might happen:
If your workforce come from a range of diverse backgrounds, they are likely to think in different ways compared to a group of similar people who not surprisingly will think in similar ways! So put simply, with more lines of thought you will get new ways of doing things.
This can also give you an increased skill set – when you hire many different people, you are going to get lots of different knowledge and experience.
Staff morale is likely to be higher when people come from different backgrounds and can relate to each other well. So when your staff works well together, they are going to be happy and want to work towards a common goal. In addition they are less likely to take time off and will work harder to achieve the company’s targets.
4. Appeal to a wider range of customers
The more diverse you are as an organisation, the more you will connect with a whole range of people. Quite simply, the wider the range of people you have on your team, the wider the range of customers you will more naturally relate to and therefore understand.
5. Brand reputation
It has been shown that valuing diversity improves your brand reputation. These days large companies have to publicly disclose their gender pay gap data; with the drive for more inclusive workplaces increasing, introducing and monitoring diversity in your hiring decisions can improve your chances of acquiring the best staff.
6. Attract and retain the best quality employees
You’ll be able to recruit the top talent if your job applications are open to everyone, and not just a select few. Staff members will feel empowered that they’ve been hired based solely on their aptitude. Employing people from different cultures may mean that your business benefits from diverse language skills, helping you to sell products and services and provide enhanced customer support. Employee turnover costs will be reduced if people feel comfortable, valued and happy in a workplace with an ethical culture.
Put simply, with society becoming ever-more inclusive and young talent in particular being acutely aware of inclusivity, your teams need to reflect the society in which we live so you can attract and retain the best talent.
Let’s conclude with some practical actions we can take starting with our recruitment processes in particular:
If you would like to see more, please visit our Equality & Diversity Training Course page.
Originally published: 15 January, 2020
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