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How to break the bias

Organisations are under increasing pressure to turn their commitment to diversity, equality and inclusion into action. While we’ve seen ad-hoc fundraisers, events and social media support, organisation leaders should be thinking about building a scalable DEI strategy that creates a culture of belonging for communities. 

It can be difficult to know where to start when it comes to building such a strategy, but it needn’t be. One of the best ways to get started is to simply establish a culture of listening to your employees by proactively soliciting feedback about their experience at work. 

Ask for feedback, conduct DEI surveys, hold focus groups – by gathering and then reviewing the data, you can see where your good points are and where you need to improve. From there, you can start to set goals. For example, to increase the percentage of employees from underrepresented backgrounds by X%. 

Breaking away from tradition

The demographic makeup of power structures mean that data gathering methods typically reflect the traditional white male perspective. 

So, when it comes to analysing the data and coming up with solutions, it’s important to use the entire workplace as a sounding board and not just one or two people. The latter isn’t equitable and you’re probably not going to get it right. 

Further to this, it’s important to make DEI the norm. Talk about it everywhere, in every meeting, for example, so people get used to hearing about it, talking about it and incorporating it into their everyday lives. It’s also crucial to create safe platforms for these types of conversations, such as DEI-specific Slack channels for discussions and debates. 

Measuring success 

Without measuring the impact of your DEI initiatives over time, it will be difficult to understand, share or quantify the results. There are many DEI metrics, so you need to identify the primary measure of success at your organisation. Just some of the metrics of success to choose from include: 

  • Hiring
  • Representation
  • Retention
  • Development 
  • Job satisfaction and engagement
  • Accessibility
  • Leadership
  • Suppliers

Building better

Building a diverse, equitable and inclusive workplace culture is not easy. It takes time and commitment from your entire team. It’s not enough for everyone to be aligned with your DEI strategy, they must all also be active participants in bringing it to life. 

However, modern organisations have a responsibility to their employees and the broader social community to do this work, break the bias and create work cultures where marginalised people can thrive and see their achievements celebrated.

If you need support with improving diversity, equity and inclusion within your company, get in touch with our team on [email protected] or 01242 500 557 to find out how we can help.

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