Previously seen as a sop to do-gooders, diversity is now understood to be a key asset to a business by a lot of businesses. Others have not been as quick on the uptake of this understanding. If you prioritise the effectiveness of your organisation, it would be wise to pay heed to the facts.
Companies lacking diversity often fall into rote ways of thinking, treating the world as an already homogenised place, missing opportunities to grow and lacking understanding of different viewpoints.
When we talk about diversity we mean that a variety of ages, genders, abilities/disabilities, religions, ethnicities and sexual orientations are represented. Quite a few businesses still find it a struggle to imagine how these individuals may fit into their workplace.
To take this seriously, and be take seriously by your candidates, you must reckon with out-dated policies. Take religion, for example. Do you have a policy whereby those of differing faiths can take time off during the day, or during the year, in order to praise or respect their respective deities? If asked about this subject, can the hiring manager answer questions to ease any doubts that the candidates might have?
Diversity is not about ticking boxes. Diversity is about respect. Promoting inclusivity must lead from the job spec and job ad to the outreach to the interview and onboarding stages. Have you thought about the image your company projects within its commercials or website or literature?
Why go to the trouble, you ask? It is common knowledge that businesses with diverse workforces make better decisions and problem solve more efficiently. As the world becomes more diverse, the brain trust that comes with a diverse team cannot be underestimated. How much second-guessing does a business do? How many mistakes are made due to misunderstanding? How much of your resources have you poured into mistakes or fixing mistakes? Life doesn’t have to be that complicated.
Keeping a clear head and remaining focused on the important part of recruitment is paramount. Recruitment is subject to outside beliefs, which means it is not a sober and strategic mindset that is motivating the hiring decisions, but one of emotion and stereotyping.
The way to counter this is two-fold:
- Expertise. Engaging with a Specialist Recruitment Partner is important. They can guide you. Being from outside the business means that they can objectively assess the needs of the business and identify blind spots that those who have been within the company for a while cannot see. All you need to do it make your recruitment partner aware of the plan you have and they will be able to build diverse teams. But before you do that, you must understand…
- Data. Do you know what your current ratios are? How can you begin to tackle a problem if you do not know exactly how bad the problem is? HR need to be set the task of reporting back your diversity in order for you to assess and plan how you will improve.
Businesses that pride themselves on keeping that competitive edge need to embrace diversity. Enlarging the skillset of a business by exploiting the varied experiences of a diverse team means innovative ideas are brought to the forefront, cultural understandings are greater and adaptability is improved. When working with a business that is clearly committed to reflecting all walks of life, employees there are happier and more secure in themselves. And isn’t that what everyone wants?
Curious about how Zenshin Talent can help your organisation? Contact us today for a no-strings conversation about your needs and our experience.