Being an inclusive workplace is extremely important, no matter the size of your business.
Not only does it allow your business to flourish, but also means that employees will feel accepted for whom they are and continue growing as you do.
Here are our top tips when it comes to welcoming inclusivity into your business…
How Inclusivity Boosts Business
Being an inclusive business has a multitude of benefits which will all reflect positively on your business and create a welcoming working environment in your workplace. Inclusivity will allow your business to have a wide range of personalities, beliefs, backgrounds, and interests – which will also bring a new sense of innovation and a wider perspective to your brand. Alongside the financial benefits, a sense of inclusivity also brings positivity into your workplace, allowing colleagues and employees to feel like they are free to express a wide range of opinions and suggestions. Inclusivity within a business is an extremely important factor in creating a safe and comfortable workplace for all.
How to Improve Inclusivity in Your Business
Whether you feel like you need to bring more inclusivity within your brand or you’re struggling to think of fresh ideas on how to develop this factor in your workplace, here are some suggestions for bringing a wider sense of inclusivity into your company…
1. Make Inclusivity a Priority
It’s important to stress that inclusivity isn’t just about ticking a box for HR. The impact it can have on employee well-being, staff retention and overall business growth can be huge.
Offering inclusivity training across your management team will ensure that this is an ethos that is reflected across the business as a whole.
2. Provide the Opportunity for Feedback
An important factor in inclusivity is ensuring your team members feel work is a safe space, where they can air their grievances effectively if they feel they’re coming up against prejudice.
If your business has a grievance system that doesn’t work well, all you’ll potentially end up with is an unhappy team who don’t see the point in speaking up. Offering a flexible approach to such situations, with more than one path for resolution, will mean these conversations are easier to have with better results.
You might even want to consider instructing a neutral mediator in situations like this, ensuring true impartiality.
3. Celebrate All Religions and Cultures
A huge number of companies will close their doors across the UK to celebrate Christmas, Easter and more. However, significant days in other religious and cultural calendars are rarely considered for paid time off.
Whilst it may not be feasible to have a company-wide shutdown for every special day, there are still ways you can respect and celebrate different cultures when they come around.
Incorporating a more flexible holiday calendar is a great way to do this, allowing your team to decide at their discretion whether they’d like to take time off over Christmas or if they’d prefer to use this leave to celebrate Eid, for example.
4. Use Anonymous Recruiting
We’ve spoken about unconscious bias before, and an anonymised recruitment process can help to tackle this effectively.
When you’re assessing role applications, remove any information that might provoke some sort of bias (such as names, photos, gender etc.). This will help to encourage recruitment based on what really matters.
5. Create Safe Spaces for Open Conversation
Having dedicated groups for your employees that are part of communities can create a safe space for them to open up and relate to others within their community that are also a part of your business. As an example, some businesses organise ‘parent talks’ for parents to share tips and tricks or worries about their children/experiences, or some based on particular interests such as ‘book/movie clubs’, or gender-specific groups that create an understanding and relatable conversational space.
There are no hard written rules when it comes to welcoming inclusivity, so it’s important that you get to know your employees and the communities they may be a part of in order to organise effective activities – this could be done by anonymously asking what your employees would like to learn more about, or what (if any) communities they are a part of.
Applying such activities to your business may be harder than it seems, as it’s extremely important for colleagues and employees to understand that inclusivity should be welcomed with an open mind and that every workshop/group should be a safe space for all.
Setting clear rules about acceptance and expectations while also creating space for questions and informative suggestions is key – so start planning!
If you don’t know where to begin, we’re here to help. Email us at firstname.lastname@example.org for more management and inclusivity advice.