Diversity, equity and inclusion (DEI) is an increasingly hot topic that garners much attention from both business leaders and the general public alike. But posting a DEI statement online alone won’t work: you need a plan that goes beyond mere words to truly integrate diversity and equity in all that your organization does.
Action should support DEI statements. Ultimately, successful DEI statements provide details on how you are meeting your goals.
Link it back to your mission & values
One effective strategy to make your diversity and inclusion statement truly compelling is tying it back to your company’s mission statement. Most examples provided in this article have done this successfully, from Workday’s focus on “empowering individuals and companies alike by unleashing their strengths” to Target’s aim of becoming “a pioneer in inclusive business practices that support employees, customers, and communities”.
Credibility in diversity and inclusion statements hinges upon being honest about where your company currently stands on diversity and inclusion matters, rather than over promising or giving lip service to D&I initiatives that don’t really mean anything in practice. Make sure your diversity and inclusion statement includes details about current D&I status as well as plans to address any gaps over time.
An effective D&I statement should also outline the distinctions among diversity, inclusion and equity. Too often these terms are used interchangeably; however they have distinct meanings: diversity encompasses various aspects of community or population life such as ethnicity, religion gender or culture, while inclusion provides everyone in that group with opportunities to contribute freely while equity ensures fair treatment of each member within it.
As part of creating your D&I statement, one key consideration should be how your company plans on ensuring everyone feels included. There are various approaches you could take here. As part of your meeting plans, pair team members from different groups together in order to foster greater understanding between cultures and perspectives. You could also appoint an inclusivity advocate who will attend all meetings so anyone who wishes to speak is given an equal chance to do so. Create a diversity and inclusion page on your website by gathering resources that enhance its statement of commitment to diversity and inclusion. Also consider including employee or candidate testimonials to demonstrate your dedication to making sure all employees are represented equally in your workforce. This will demonstrate your dedication to providing equal representation throughout.
Consider your target audience
Writing a diversity, equity and inclusion statement requires knowing your target audiences when crafting one. Your words should be culturally sensitive while addressing any underlying concerns they might have about diversity issues that your statement will likely bring up.
At its core, equity means more than simply accepting diversity; it means creating an environment in which all can thrive. This may include things such as adapting workplace settings to accommodate health conditions or disabilities – for instance if an employee with limited hand dexterity needs scissors designed specifically for them; providing this can help them perform at their best. Another example of equitable practices includes policies which recognize employees’ identities while meeting their needs – for instance offering childcare or maternity leave shows employees they appreciate their work-life balance.
As part of your diversity and inclusion plan, it’s vital that it takes into account any challenges specific to your business and addresses any problems your organization might be experiencing – be they ageism or supporting LGBTQ+ employees.
One way of doing so is by listening to and including the feedback of employees in your DEI plan. You could do this via surveys or by setting up meetings between upper management and employees to listen and address concerns and brainstorm how your company can enhance diversity and inclusion efforts.
One way of accomplishing this goal is by setting specific and attainable goals that demonstrate to your team your commitment to creating an inclusive culture. For example, if your aim is to host an inclusive holiday party, be sure that all guests feel welcome by providing food and entertainment options suitable for those who might prefer not dancing as much.
Finally, make sure that your goals are communicated and updated frequently – this will keep your team engaged and allow them to see that progress has been made in meeting DEI goals.
Make it relevant to your business
Diversity, inclusion and equity (DEI) are three cornerstones of your business’s overall success. These principles mutually reinforce one another to foster a positive workplace culture where all employees feel a part of something bigger. An effective DEI strategy also enables companies to adapt during crises or downturns by equipping all team members with tools necessary for flourishing under trying conditions.
While many companies claim their commitment to diversity, only some truly grasp its meaning and how to implement DEI into their workplace. Some key examples include offering employees time off for religious or cultural holidays; providing mental health and disability support services; as well as developing training programs such as unconscious bias awareness or inclusive leadership training programs.
Diversity and inclusion can benefit not only employees of your company, but also its bottom line. A recent McKinsey study demonstrated this fact by finding that companies with more diverse senior-executive teams were 19 percent more profitable. A diverse workforce can lead to enhanced decision-making processes as well as foster an inclusive working culture resulting in greater company success overall.
Mac Cosmetics stands as an impressive example of a company using diversity to their advantage. When most cosmetic companies were focused on appealing solely to white consumers, Mac took a risk by creating products suited for all skin tones – which helped appeal to a broader range of audiences while increasing sales.
Businesses looking to demonstrate their dedication to DEI need to back up their statements with evidence. This may include statistics showing current progress as well as where they hope to go in the future; all this data can be presented on a dedicated page dedicated to DEI commitment by their company.
Promoting diversity and inclusion through meetings and discussions by encouraging a range of voices is another powerful way of showing your commitment. You can do this by including all employees in conversations and making sure that each feels their voice has been heard is an excellent way of showing commitment to these ideals.
Make it memorable
Diversifying and including company cultures isn’t only morally sound; it also makes good business sense. Research shows that companies with diverse teams outperform their peers more often. Diversity leads to innovation — which keeps businesses relevant in today’s ever-evolving marketplace.
However, many businesses still struggle to achieve inclusion, often as a result of unconscious bias – the tendency for people to favor those similar to themselves. With effort and creativity however, subconscious bias can be minimized; one easy way is through visual communications like websites and social media channels which include images that better represent your workforce demographics – this way including diversity can help combat unconscious bias while encouraging more diverse hires.
Furthermore, it’s key that all company communication uses language that is inclusive and does not employ discriminatory words or phrases in order to convey your inclusivity message effectively. Doing this will ensure your inclusive message doesn’t get lost in translation.
One way of accomplishing this goal is through incorporating a DEI statement onto your website, detailing your commitment to inclusion and providing details such as representation and pay data, resources that support your work, employee/candidate testimonials etc. Many organizations add employee/candidate testimonies as additional support in their DEI statements.
As part of your statement, it is also vital that you include a clear definition of diversity and inclusion. This will enable your audience to understand what you mean when talking about the two concepts, while at the same time offering clarity for newcomers to your organization.
One way of understanding diversity is comparing it to throwing a party – in this scenario, all invited are included regardless of race or gender. A diverse team should similarly welcome people from various backgrounds that bring different experiences and viewpoints into the team environment.