Explore multiple ways to celebrate diversity and inclusion at work to support a diverse workforce and create a positive workplace environment.
How does a company stay competitive in today’s market? One way is to foster a broadly diverse workforce. Diverse employees introduce a variety of new skill sets, languages, and perspectives. They are efficient in their work and create more company success. Companies that prioritize diversity attract skilled talent, boost company morale, cultivate an engaged community, retain more employees, and more accurately represent the global population.
The best way to market any global product is to have diverse teams who can share worldly perspectives, contribute to key decisions, and implement culturally appropriate solutions. In order to attract the right talent to help solve important company issues, it is vital to foster a healthy workplace environment for DEI.
Ethically speaking, embracing diversity should be every company’s responsibility in order to promote equity in society. Why not make a difference in society and foster a more inclusive environment to pave the way for a better future?
Hiring diverse employees is important but these employees must have a proper workplace to thrive. If proper conditions aren’t in place, companies may struggle to retain employees who don’t feel included in the company culture. Organizations must do their research and come up with a strategy in order to attract and retain diverse talent. Here are some ways to celebrate diversity and inclusion in the workplace.
By creating a cultural calendar, companies can make employees feel special by acknowledging their traditions and holidays. A cultural calendar can also introduce employees to different backgrounds, thereby expanding their minds and allowing them to see different perspectives. By doing so, workplaces tend to be more positive because people become more open-minded and open to change. By marking employees’ cultures on the calendar, people feel seen, celebrated, and appreciated.
Diversity Month is another great initiative to add to the calendar where companies host activities that foster conversations. Employees express cultural differences while also learning commonalities to build connections among peers.
Once a cultural calendar is developed, it is important to observe cultural holidays by researching more about the holiday, inviting employees who celebrate that holiday to share their input, and celebrating the holiday with the team. Employees can share their stories and traditions and get the opportunity to showcase their heritage and build community. Companies should create a safe space for their employees so they can feel comfortable opening up that side of their lives to the team. They need to support them, encourage them, and motivate others to join in on their celebrations.
Another great way to foster community is to host multicultural potlucks. Organizing a potluck where each individual is encouraged to bring a traditional dish and speak more about their culture will give employees the opportunity to show their individuality, tell stories about their family recipes, and deepen their connections with fellow colleagues. Employees will not only be able to educate others on their own cultural cuisine but they’ll also be able to taste foods from diverse cultures and learn more about different cultures around the world.
Potlucks are one example of cultural awareness events but there are many other types of activities that can expand employees’ understanding of different backgrounds. Some examples include cultural performances, cooking classes, panel discussions, music, and ceremonial activities. By providing a variety of initiatives to foster a better understanding of various cultures, employers can provide many opportunities to experience diverse cultural traditions.
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It’s important for everyone in a company to feel included in the workplace environment, to be valued for their unique perspectives, to be celebrated for their contributions, and to be respected for who they are. By creating a safe environment, employees are empowered to be more innovative, communicative, creative, and successful. The key to keeping good employees is valuing them, respecting them, understanding them, and supporting them. In order to do that, organizations need to learn how to honor employees’ diverse perspectives.
Some strategies for open communication include allowing employees to share their opinions and concerns through anonymous methods. Executives can then address those concerns at team meetings. Employees will feel like their opinions matter when executives explain how the company plans to make changes based on their feedback. Scheduling 1:1 meetings between managers and employees will give employees a chance to address issues in a private space. Establishing regular company-wide meetings where employees can voice their thoughts will allow for open communication.
Celebrating diversity has to be a continued effort in order for it to be effective. Employees will know immediately if cultural diversity efforts are genuine or not. The organization should have a vested interest in fostering a healthy workplace environment that celebrates diversity by hiring diverse people, appreciating them, showing interest in their culture, and continuing to vest interest in them. These values should show up in company policies as well. Employees who are disrespectful should be dealt with appropriately and employees who uphold these values should be rewarded.
Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion breakout groups should protect and champion these communities by creating a safe space to hear their perspectives, listen to their experiences, and provide feedback to leadership teams regarding DEI initiatives. By creating a middle ground for employees to reach out to when issues arise, companies can create trusted environments for employees to voice their needs and ask for change.
By implementing these and many other strategies, companies can honor diverse perspectives and create a healthy workplace for employees. Providing platforms and resources to employees to share their thoughts allows them to be transparent about their situations and helps executive teams understand how their decisions are affecting their employees. Discussing these thoughts and implementing systemic change is the best course of action to show employees that their employer cares for their needs and wants them to succeed.
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