February is Black History Month and a great opportunity to remember and celebrate all the contributions that Black people have made to society throughout history.
The theme of this year’s Black History Month is Black Resistance, which aims to highlight how Black people have resisted oppression, in all forms, since the nation's earliest days.
Although we’ve made some significant strides forward in recent years, when it comes to racial equality, it’s clear there’s still some way to go.
DEI in the workplace.
DEI stands for diversity, equity and inclusion and represents a group of principles that employers can embed in their organizations to establish and maintain harmonious and successful workplaces.
Diversity in the workplace is about the acceptance and inclusion of employees from all backgrounds, regardless of gender, color, age, ethnicity, physical ability, sexual orientation or religious beliefs. A diverse workforce is a powerful tool for any company because employees from different backgrounds bring a diverse range of skills and experience.
Inclusion in the workplace ensures employees have a sense of belonging within an organization. Being inclusive is an important part of a company’s culture, because it enables employees to be themselves without fear of discrimination.
Equity in the workplace requires eliminating barriers and enabling employees to access opportunities fairly, regardless of their background or identity. Organizations that enforce equity in the workplace are committed to providing equal access to professional resources and opportunities.
DEI, of course, is broader than racial equality, but during Black History Month, it’s important to stay focused on Black history and not dilute your impact by celebrating all cultures and races.
DEI programs produce a long list of benefits.
DEI is about more than just checking a box and preventing your company from a costly lawsuit. It’s about recognizing the potential that a diverse workforce can bring — to help your business grow and develop, while helping your employees feel a sense of belonging.
By embedding DEI in your workplace, you can create an environment where employees feel empowered and can thrive, both personally and professionally.
When an employee feels accepted and respected, they’re likely to feel more motivated, which leads to them being more effective and efficient in their work. This can greatly increase the productivity of your business and enhance their mental wellbeing and job satisfaction.
High employee morale also leads to higher staff retention because, when employees are happy at work, they stay at a company for longer and are less likely to look elsewhere for another job. This means you’ll spend less money and time on recruiting.
7 ways to promote DEI in the workplace.
- Educate employees on different cultures and DEI topics
- Acknowledge holidays that celebrate all cultures
- Have open conversations with employees and invite feedback
- Encourage employees to speak up if they feel they or a colleague have been treated unfairly
- Review your company policies to ensure equal opportunities and fair treatment for everyone
- Review your hiring processes to ensure you’re proactively recruiting a diverse pool of talent
- Make DEI part of your company’s DNA by including it in your mission and values
Unite your teams. Maximize your impact.
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