Diversity management -What does it have to do with me?

Probably you, who have taken a few minutes to read this article, belong to one of the companies that have implemented a diversity and inclusion policy.

Perhaps you don’t know very much about its practical application, on a day-to-day basis, and you would like to get more involved.

You may have a managerial position and would like to know a little more about inclusive leadership, its positive impact on team management, and what you can do to help your area in order to benefit from these policies.

Beyond the motivations that lead companies to implement diversity and inclusion policies (legal imperative, branding, internal values, etc.), truth is that we can all contribute.

The implementation of actions in some (or several) dimensions of diversity (gender, age, ability, culture – ethnicity, race, sexual orientation and gender identity, etc.) is not just a set of written commitments, it depends on all members of the group.

The company has put these policies in place.. what can I do?

If we are lucky enough to be in a company with colleagues from other different cultures, we can start by trying to learn a little more about their culture and customs, their experience, what they like about ours and what they miss about theirs.

Knowing how they communicate, present a topic, lead a team, can help us improve, a lot, our personal and professional relationship.

You will discover interesting things and hopefully, learn how to better have a relationship with them in a work environment. (We will return to that topic in another article with practical examples!)

Creating an inclusive environment improves professional relationships, team efficiency and provides new perspectives to resolve conflicts, innovate and attract talent.

How can a diversity and inclusion policy get that impact on its own?

The answer is that it cannot by itself.  It needs a team effort.

As a manager, success comes from ensuring that your team knows those policies, that they make them their own and they believe in them.

Training adapted to the specific diversity of the group is a key to success. The other key means supporting the team, collecting their feedback on how they see those policies, getting suggestions for improvements, their commitment and how to correct or enhance them.

As part of the team, do not miss the opportunity to give a constructive opinion, to meet and make yourself known to others, broaden your mind and adapt your speech to the diversity of your colleagues. 

Worth the effort!

If we cannot now end our differences, at least we can help make the world safe for diversity.

John F. Kennedy

If you liked this article, we invite you to know this and other topics on the blog.

We will talk about practical examples later, stay tuned!

Find out more: The Diversity and Inclusion Revolution – 8 Powerful Truths. Juliet Bourke and Bernadette Dillon, Deloitte 2018