Creating a functional diversity and inclusion program at your company is not an easy task. In between all of the moving parts, there is a lot of room for error. There are some common mistakes to be aware of when implementing a diversity and inclusion program. Here are some of them:
Not Having Management Buy-In
A lot of the time, HR or management teams will be put in charge of diversity and inclusion. Though it’s good to have somebody organizing any new programs, you need to have buy-in from all levels within the organization. If only HR and managers are trained and aware of the diversity and inclusion program, it will have a hard time spreading through your company. Instead, incorporate diversity and inclusion into every department of your company and make sure everyone has the option to receive training and support.
Leaving Out Inclusion
Having a diverse workforce doesn’t automatically mean your company is also inclusive. Being inclusive goes beyond being diverse. Inclusion is about looking at each worker for their contribution to your company, their opinions and values, and how they add to your culture. This is especially important to implement when hiring.
You may have a diversity and inclusion policy in place, but is it anything more than lip service? As a leader, you need to make sure that diversity and inclusion are ingrained in your company. Talk frequently about diversity and inclusion with your employees and present a consistent message about diversity and inclusion in your company. Every time you consider a new company policy or program, consider how it impacts your diversity and inclusion efforts.
Having a Narrow Focus
Diversity is for all minority groups, not just women or people of color. Focusing too much on one or two minorities can unintentionally exclude other minority groups. Make sure your diversity and inclusion program has a wide focus that can include all minority groups. This will give more individuals the inclusion they deserve.
Diversity and inclusion are tough topics to handle. Being aware of these common mistakes can help you develop a more successful program.