If you’ve worked hard to recruit a diverse team, you may think your job is done. However, bringing people with a wide range of backgrounds into your organization is only half the battle. You need everyone to feel welcome and valued too. Use these tips to build a more inclusive workplace.
Recognize the Benefits of an Inclusive Workplace
Diversity and inclusion programs not only are the right thing to do but also, help companies improve overall performance. For example, a 2014 study found employees who felt included reported being more innovative and engaged. While another research project showed diverse teams were 158 percent more likely to create effective products for their target customers. When leaders and employees understand the true benefits of an inclusive workplace, they are more likely to commit to a culture of inclusion.
Many businesses believe inclusion involves, “adding nursing rooms for mothers, meditation or universal prayer rooms, gender-neutral bathrooms and acknowledging all religious and cultural holidays.” (Forbes, 2019) Although this is a good start, inclusion isn’t limited to gender, religion, sexual orientation, and ethnicity. What about employees who are older? Handicapped? Learning disabled? Part-time? Or remote? Ultimately, EVERYONE should know they are an essential part of your team regardless of their, differences.
Commit to Ongoing Training
Training plays a vital role in building a more inclusive workplace. Unfortunately, too many companies treat training as a “one-time-use silver bullet.” (Forbes, 2019) For instance, a workshop on unconscious bias can be interesting. But without continuous support, it won’t have a lasting impact. To be successful, inclusion must be part of the ongoing conversation.
Encourage an Open Dialogue
Do your employees feel included? If you don’t ask, you won’t know. Of course, cultivating an open dialogue takes time and patience. Successful organizations diligently work to create an environment where employees aren’t shy about sharing their views. Nevertheless, despite your best efforts, some people may be uncomfortable bringing up sensitive topics. Anonymous surveys as well as one-on-one meetings can help you break down these barriers.
Track Your Progress
Measuring the success of your inclusion efforts can be tricky, but it’s possible. One trackable metric is retention. Specifically, when you recruit diverse candidates, do they remain with your team? If not, a lack of inclusion could be to blame. Maybe your new hires left because they believed they didn’t fit in. Employee satisfaction surveys are another way to measure your progress. Employees’ perspectives could provide further insight into the success or shortcomings of your inclusion programs.
Are You Looking for More Tips for Creating a Better Workplace?
BOS Staffing publishes weekly blog posts on topics ranging from eliminating bias in your hiring process to motivating a bored team. And if your business needs extra assistance with recruiting and hiring, we can help with that too. Our recruiters place talented candidates with top companies in Gainesville, GA, and beyond. Start building a better team through BOS Staffing today!