Don’t forget to check Part 1 of 3 of D&I in Workplace

Diversity and Inclusion (D&I) in the Workplace – Part 2 of 3

Managing D&I in Workplace

Managing diversity in the workplace presents a set of unique challenges for Human Resources (HR) professionals.  For leadership to effectively manage diversity in the workplace, they need to understand their own backgrounds and how their behavior and beliefs can affect their decision-making within a diverse environment.

Tips of Managing Workplace Diversity

#1 Prioritize Communication

To manage a diverse workplace, organizations need to ensure that they effectively communicate with employees. Policies, procedures, safety rules and other important information should be designed to overcome language and cultural barriers by translating materials and using pictures and symbols whenever applicable.  This involves understanding the nuances of the communication content across different cultures and communicating with clarity to avoid misunderstanding.

#2 Treat Each Employee as an Individual

Avoid making assumptions about employees from different backgrounds. Instead, look at each employee as an individual and judge successes and failures on the individual’s merit rather than attributing actions to their background.  Do not look at people as stereotypes or generalize based on assumptions.

#3 Encourage Employees to Work in Diverse Groups

Diverse work teams let employees get to know and value one another on an individual basis and can help break down preconceived notions and cultural misunderstandings.

#4 Base Standard on  Objective Criteria

Set one standard of rules for all groups of employees regardless of background. Ensure that all employment actions, including discipline, follow these standardized criteria to make sure each employee is treated the same.

#5 Be Open-Minded

Recognize, and encourage employees to share their experiences and bring their diversity to the organization, team, and their work. Encourage thinking outside the box even if it is a product of their specific experience, background, and culture. Look for ways to incorporate a diverse range of perspectives and talents to achieve organizational goals.  Let all voices be heard as part of the organization.

#6 Hiring from a Diverse Resource Pool

To build a diverse workplace, it is crucial to recruit and hire talent from a variety of backgrounds. This requires leadership and others who make hiring decisions to overcome their own biases in interviewing and assessing talent. If organizations can break through bias and hire the most qualified people, those with the right education, credentials, experience and skill sets, a diverse workplace should be the natural result.

Tips for hiring a diverse workforce:

  • Incorporate a diverse interview panel to ensure candidates are chosen solely based on their suitability for the position and their abilities, experience and other attributes that make them qualified.
  • Managers should be trained on what can and cannot be asked in an interview. For example, queries about personal life, political beliefs, disability, genetic information are off-limits.
  • Get creative when recruiting.
  • Focus on job requirements and the experience and knowledge of the candidates.
  • Be sure all candidates are aware of the expectation of working in diverse teams.
  • Ensure top-down precedence is set for being courteous and open to diversity. Lead by example.

Don’t Forget to check “Part 3 of 3” for more information on Diversity in the Workplace.

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