So you’ve built a multicultural team? Congratulations! Diversity in the workplace leads to more innovation, creativity, and better business performance. However, hiring a diverse workforce is only the beginning: it is essential that you build an inclusive environment that allows everyone to feel safe sharing their ideas.
Here are three tips for building inclusive environments.
1. Celebrate what makes each employee unique
Ignoring differences doesn’t make employees feel included: it makes them feel unseen. By focusing on every employee’s unique lived experiences and specific value they bring to the table, you create pride in difference and build an environment that makes employees want to stand out instead of conform.
2. Build an empathetic leadership culture
Listening is essential to building inclusive teams, especially when you have people from different countries and backgrounds. Having managers who are able to listen and connect lays a foundation of trust so that when big problems like racism, homophobia, or sexism happen, the employee knows they can go to that manager and be supported.
3. Build a diverse leadership team
Representation is important, especially in the company leadership. When there are women or people of color in leadership positions, it signals to diverse populations that there is growth potential in that company. Why does this matter? Because often diversity and inclusion is a box to check, “I have a woman now, so we’re diverse.” Actually promoting diverse leadership indicates that the company values the people for what they can do and are not just looking for tokens.
The three tips are just the beginning. A real commitment to diversity and inclusion has to be an ongoing and intentional process that has resources put behind it, not a one off initiative.
Written by: Lex Gillon, Content and Brand Manager at ultimate.ai