Diversity in your workforce is good for business. Sameness is bad. It can reinforce ‘stuck’ thinking and inhibit progressive thinking.
The greater the number of different perspectives that exist within a system, the more creative and innovative that system will be as a whole. The greater the variety of people in an environment, the more understanding there is of different viewpoints and therefore the more welcoming the environment is to everyone. The workplace is a nicer place to be and there is a wider array of positive role models.
There is a simple way you can increase the diversity of your work force. That is to concentrate on making sure that your employees are cared for. There is no need to spend lots of time, energy and money on promotion convincing people that you are an equal opportunities employer. Instead, get serious about the wellbeing of your workers by putting in place a proper employee wellbeing strategy.
One of the by-products of improving the wellbeing of your employees is that you will start to build an environment that supports diversity. When you care for you employees and look after them you will improve your reputation as an ethical employer and become a more attractive prospect to a much wider range of people.
There are a lot of red herrings when it comes to diversity. For example many people in the construction industry (including those who are trying to solve the problem) believe that females are underrepresented in the sector due to the fact that construction is seen as an oil and rag trade. But actually, there is no logical reason why women would avoid a career in construction for this reason. More likely it is because it is a hostile environment with poor focus on compassion, creativity and communication.
Here are some questions to consider:
- Do all of your existing employees feel cared for? Do you know this for sure or are you guessing?
- Are you currently actively supporting their wellbeing? How specifically? What more could you do?
- Do your potential employees see you as an inviting, welcoming and caring employer?
- Do you fully understand and address the needs of all of your employees no matter what their gender, race, religion, political persuasion or sexual orientation?
- Do you use language that appeals to all your staff? Or could you potentially be alienating certain groups of people because you haven’t done proper analysis?
- As an organisation are you totally clear about how wellbeing impacts on diversity AND how diversity impacts on wellbeing?
I’d love to hear your thoughts and experiences of this topic. Please share your views and questions in the comments box.
Don’t have an Employee Wellbeing Strategy yet? Get in touch with me to find out how I can help you.
If you are an organisation and you’d like to benefit your business by giving the gift of wellbeing to your employees, you can find out more about how we can help you here or contact ChangeGives.
We also offer personal, employee and Executive coaching.