How Can You Encourage Diversity in the Workplace?
Here are a few tips to help you promote diversity at work:
- Diversity in the workplace begins with diversity in recruiting employees. Some agencies are now using a blind application process, in which an applicant’s race, sex, age, and even name are not listed when applications are reviewed. This makes employers focus more on an applicant’s skills and qualifications and can remove some bias in selecting candidates for interviews.
- Consider offering employees the opportunity to attend diversity and cultural awareness conferences and trainings. Many universities host these events regularly, and they can be a great way to increase diversity awareness among employees.
- Make diversity training a voluntary experience. Mandatory training in diversity could lead to negative attitudes toward diversity. Employees are likely to reject values or ideas that are forced onto them. They may feel that their own values are being threatened of marginalized.
- Self-awareness is important. It is necessary to understand and acknowledge our own cultural identities, biases, and prejudices in order to gain a diverse perspective. Do you promote this with your employees or coworkers?
- Hold Diversity Discussions where staff can discuss diversity issues with their coworkers in an environment of respect and mutual understanding. Create the opportunity for employees to learn more about each other and their respective cultures.
- Encourage employees or coworkers to attend events through your local Diversity Partnership, if one exists in your area. If there is no partnership in your area, then starting a partnership through your organization is a great way to promote workplace and community diversity!