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THE FRAGILITY OF DIVERSITY

THE FRAGILITY OF DIVERSITY

TALK, TALK, TALK AND TALK SOME MORE:

Diversity hasn’t progressed in the way it should have because of blind spots and unconscious bias. We all have them and it’s human nature, however, it’s only when we recognize and are familiar with the problems that we can do anything about them. Talk to your company about your diversity mission, communicate it to everyone’s inbox, ask for feedback and plaster it on the walls. Whatever it takes to become a collective part of your brands consciousness. Again, it’s about it becoming a part of who the team and organization is, not a side program or initiative. Creating a diverse employee force will not happen by accident or as a result of senior management. It’s something that must be embodied by everyone in the organization, a collective awareness that is fighting against the perceived ‘norm’.

Domain hosting site Go.Daddy did this brilliantly using reverse propaganda to hire more female engineers into their business. Recognizing that there are less than 30% of engineers who are women, they flipped the industry perception by ensuring that 80% of pictures on their office walls featured women. They ensured that the monthly guest speakers were 80% female, giving the idea that more women worked in the industry than was true. Their entire company believed that and subconsciously began hiring more females into their teams. They now hire one of the biggest female engineering forces.

TALK TO THE PEOPLE WHO KNOW:

It’s incredible how often diverse employees are left out of the decision-making process regarding what will attract other diverse employees. No one knows it better than the people currently under your roof, so bring them into the conversation. Discuss how your business can do better to attract diversity. Conduct ‘stay interviews’ that address problems before it’s too late. Ask for help with innovation and new incentives. Be open to receiving feedback, that often will include criticisms, as it’s the only way your business can learn faster and quicker. Remember, all change requires some level of discomfort. Talk about the things that matter, you can’t address what you don’t know.

INCLUDE IT IN YOUR BRAND:

The subconscious mind is a powerful thing, and we train the subconscious to believe certain things. Use diversity across your branding, both internally and externally. This can be something as small as using diverse images in presentations during weekly meetings. It’s often the small things that help us grow bigger and stronger.

With data and research showing that diverse companies see 2.3 times the cash flow per employee when compared to their less diverse peers (over a 3-year period)[1], it’s no longer possible to ignore diverse hiring and the role we all should play. The good news is, there is so much that we can do to start bringing about positive changes that will impact our workforce and economy.

[1] “Only 3% Of Fortune 500 Companies Share Full Diversity Data” Fortune 500, 7 June. 2017, http://fortune.com/2017/06/07/fortune-500-diversity/]]>

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