Why You Need To Understand How Diversity & Inclusion Fits In Your Workplace

You may have been aware of the importance of diversity and inclusion in your small business in recent years. Perhaps it’s something in the “too hard” basket, and you aren’t sure how to approach it. Or maybe it feels like yet “another thing” on the to-do list. However, implementing even minor changes in your workplace can significantly impact the development of a culture of D&I in your workplace. Not sure why that matters? Let’s explore it!

Why Diversity and Inclusion are important

Diversity and inclusion are more than just corporate buzzwords. Building an inclusive culture means having employees with diverse perspectives, experiences, and skills.

When workplaces prioritise Diversity and Inclusion, they get access to a broader range of skills and experience, which leads to better decision-making and a more engaged workforce. Hitting targets is just a small piece of what real D&I supporters do at work. It’s not just about ticking boxes but about changing the culture to appreciate and understand everyone’s unique skills and abilities at work.

Success Stories: Australia’s Inclusive Employers

It’s awesome that Australia has organisations that don’t just talk about D&I principles but actually implement them. Did you know that, according to the DCA’s Inclusion@Work Index, Aussie workplaces such as Westpac, ANZ, and Telstra are setting the standard for diversity representation?

That doesn’t mean that everything is smooth sailing all the time! There are a number of challenges that need addressing. Leaders who care about creating an inclusive workplace stress the need for genuine dedication to changing the culture and expectations around diversity and inclusion. Just having diversity initiatives on paper won’t cut it.

Key Components of Diversity and Inclusion
  1. Demographic diversity – includes gender balance, diverse ethnic and cultural representation, a multi-generational workforce, and inclusivity for all genders
  2. Cognitive diversity – Appreciating different problem-solving styles from varied educational backgrounds.
  3. Inclusive Leadership – Through promoting diversity and inclusion at the top level, leaders can mentor and advocate for diverse talent, setting an example of inclusive behaviour and communication.
  4. Equitable policies – Promoting equal opportunities through policy implementation and review for inclusivity and support for reporting discrimination.
  5. Flexible work arrangements – THIS! Remote working broadens the talent pool when hiring. Allowing workplaces to work from (almost) anywhere means you have the best chance of recruiting a skilled workforce that is the “right fit”.
  6. Training and development – Conducting diversity training regularly to raise awareness and understanding.
  7. Inclusive recruitment and hiring practices – actively sourcing candidates from diverse channels and collaborating with diverse professional networks to attract a broad talent pool.
  8. Measurement and Continuous Improvement – As with implementing any major workplace transition, setting KPIs allows leadership to gauge implementation success using data
Addressing Intersectionality

The best workplaces in Australia know D&I initiatives can be complicated, but this can be addressed by acknowledging that we all have a variety of identities. Intersectionality recognises that people can face multiple forms of discrimination based on their social identities, like race, gender, class, and so on. Intersectionality is great for understanding people’s experiences but can make implementing a culture of diversity and inclusion in the workplace difficult. That’s why smart workplaces consider that people have many aspects of their identity and ensure their initiatives reflect that.

The most inclusive workplaces in Australia aren’t just a model for others. Their ongoing success proves that a diverse and inclusive culture can lead to a thriving business. The DCA’s list of inclusive employers proves that diversity and inclusion make for a great workplace where everyone can succeed.

The Administration Agency is a remote working team of passionate virtual assistants. Our team is located across Australia and has a broad range of talents and skills that they use to help grow and scale businesses. Why not reach out today for a FREE discovery call and see how we can help you reach your goals?

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