Has 2020 Changed Diversity in the Workplace?

For too long companies have ignored the importance of diversity and equality in the workplace. With Black Lives Matter inspiring a big moment this year after the death of George Floyd, diversity & inclusion have been the heart of 2020.

What is diversity in the workplace?

Modern society has shown that diversity goes beyond gender, race, and ethnicity, now including diverse religions, political beliefs, education, socioeconomic backgrounds, sexual orientation, cultures, and disabilities. Employing this diversity within a workplace and applying a range of characteristics and experiences is what makes up a diverse workplace.

How has 2020 helped? There are some major factors that the business community is taking, while still learning and adapting, to make diversity in the workplace more than just a movement. What have we done in 2020 to make these changes?

Speak Out

Companies that have stayed quiet aren’t just staying out of the conversation. They are making a decision by not engaging, and people are recognizing that. As the saying goes, the worst conversation to have is the one you don’t have.

Recruit for Diversity

Diverse hiring audits and diverse metrics are now a part of many recruitment processes. With available tools, like this one, hiring managers can now measure if potential candidates (mainly diverse candidates) are attracted to the job postings.

Employee Resource Groups

These groups are agents of change. Their focus is to make a big difference in the business community and create a more diverse environment.

ERG’s are voluntary, employee-led groups that foster a diverse, inclusive workplace aligned with organizational mission, values, goals, business practices, and objectives. Other benefits include the development of future leaders, increased employee engagement, and expanded marketplace reach. –Catalyst.org

Have Open Conversations

Effective communication within an organization helps expand cultural understanding and equal opportunity. Inclusion and respect for everyone in the workplace creates transparency and acceptance, making for a better work environment for all to excel.

The business community is starting to create strategies that target underrepresented groups, and getting comfortable with being uncomfortable. People are recognizing that there are groups that have historically been at a disadvantage, and the need to create change is prudent. It has statistically been proven that diversity makes companies and businesses stronger.

Companies that reported above-average diversity on their management teams also reported innovation revenue that was 19 percentage points higher than that of companies with below-average leadership diversity—45% of total revenue versus just 26% – Boston Consulting Group

With thousands of articles touching diversity and the importance of its recognition, this year has opened up and accelerated the conversations that are needed. Companies are starting to look at diversity as an opportunity, not a need. Promoting underrepresented groups is a constant work-in-progress, taking time, effort, and commitment at all levels. It’s a call to action for all organizations, large and small, to play an important role in the integration of diversity in the workplace.  

Our society is not all the same, why should our management team look all the same? 

Forbes

For more diversity in the workplace surverys, check out this article https://www.catalyst.org/research/why-diversity-and-inclusion-matter/

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