“Diversity is being invited to the party. Inclusion is being asked to dance.” —Vernā Myers
What is DEI & B? The letters stand for diversity, equity, inclusion and belonging, a necessity in any business. It’s a hot topic right now. Many businesses need help getting up to speed. And that’s OK.
These key terms are intended to ensure an organization’s population and culture are aligned and include and incorporate a population of employees that is both consistent with the community it serves and supported as employees of varying backgrounds. Each term is very important to creating a diverse and fair corporate culture that is set up for maximum growth.
The best teams are full of diversity at all levels, inclusive and offer a culture of belonging. This sounds simple enough, but a lot goes into these efforts: analyzing data, reviewing your recruitment efforts, understanding how your employees feel and what gaps may exist, ensuring leaders know what to do if and when issues arise, and creating a continuously inclusive environment.
Every business has unique needs. For example, a small warehouse may have very different needs than a large corporate office. A consultant can help you get started and identify a strong long-term strategy.
While it seems logical to have such a strategy, many businesses are not being intentional in this space. A recent study by Jobvite found that 20% of recruiters stated their business does not intend to prioritize these initiatives in the next year. In a study of chief information officers and their organizations, Deloitte discovered that women and non-white associates each account for about a quarter of representation in technology leadership teams. Additionally, 84% of the men believed that the DEI & B company vision and strategy were well known within their companies, while only 60% of women agreed.
Having a DEI & B strategy that is succinct, streamlined and synchronized with your business needs will not only keep you compliant with various laws and regulations, it’s just the right thing to do. When you have employees from a variety of backgrounds, they bring different ideas to the table that can come together in a way that pushes your business forward. When these employees also feel supported and encouraged in the work that they do, they will perform at a high level.
A strong DEI & B initiative examines a company’s population, identifies gaps and creates an action plan for any areas where the need for improvement exists. Additionally, the strategy should include all areas of the employee lifecycle from recruitment to retirement or termination.
Examples of items that may be included in a DEI & B strategy include:
- Data collection & analysis
- Tailored recruitment strategies
- Employee resource groups (ERGs)
- Bias training
- Additional coaching & training
- Integration of inclusive language
- Ongoing support
DEI & B is a journey, not a destination. Incorporating each DEI & B term in your corporate culture will assist in creating and maintaining an environment that helps achieve the growth you seek.
Written by Baker Creative’s Katie Dankovich, Human Capital Specialist