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3 Steps to become an advocate for diversity in the workplace

Fact: Diverse teams perform better

09.03.2020

Diversity, inclusion, and equality happen to be fantastic for business. Data shows that diverse teams perform better. Whatsmore, teams who think their workplace is inclusive are more innovative.

Diverse teams make 60% faster decisions, and those decisions are better 87% of the time. On the flip side, businesses that lack diversity see higher turnover rates.

Study after study show the benefits of diversity and inclusion — yet, only 10% of CEOs in Norway's largest companies are women. And that number is even lower (much lower) for people of color. And one in four LBGTQ employees report discrimination on the job.

What’s keeping businesses from — well, doing better business? It turns out, it's a lot of things … and the way to fix it is to get involved with the issue at your workplace.

3 ways you can imrove workplace diversity:

1.) Hire a diverse team

One of the major blockers to workplace equality, diversity, and inclusion is that hiring managers tend to hire people who remind them of themselves.

Here are 4 ways you can fight that bias:

  • Recommend people for open positions at your company. Referrals are incredible tools to get people hired, but women of color are 35% less likely than white men to be referred for a position.
  • Ask for diverse referrals from your coworkers and network.
  • Consider “blind hiring,” which deletes biographical information.
  • If you're on the other side of the job advert (we're talking to you, job searchers), be sure to check out how the companies you have your eye on rank on equalitycheck.it .

2.) Include everyone

Getting diverse people on the payroll is only part of the work. Making sure they’re included, and that people of all types are communicating, is crucial.

Here are 3 ways you can boost inclusion:

  • Sponsorships (teaching junior people valuable skills) and being an advocate for employees who aren’t in the room are crucial ways to start fighting against bias.
  • Explore new ways of communicating within the office so that the same people aren’t always the ones making decisions and speaking up during meetings. (Here are a few examples to get started.)
  • Practice active listening.

3.) Speak up

As an individual, your voice has the power to create significant change in your company; no matter the size.

Things to start asking about:

  • Hiring practices.
  • Sponsorship programs.
  • Their performance review policies.
  • What's being done to minimize gender bias.
  • How they measure inclusion, not just diversity.
  • What's being done to create equality in leadership teams.
  • What their goals are in terms of diverse representation in leadership teams.
  • Whether they’re willing to implement family-friendly policies to attract and retain more working parents.

Have you stood up for equality in your workplace? How did it go? What tactics have worked for you? We’re most effective when we’re sharing our experiences openly — share yours with the hashtag #EqualityCheck or leave a review.

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