Creating a diverse and inclusive workplace is vital to any modern business to truly succeed and flourish. Through reading our blog series on diversity, you will understand that creating a diverse workplace promotes a wide range of skills, ideas and talents to improve overall business performance. A diverse workplace, however, may not have an inclusive culture, and an inclusive culture may not have diversity amongst its employees. If you’re looking to create diversity to improve your business, inclusiveness will also need to be integrated.
So what is an inclusive workplace? An inclusive workplace is defined as a:
- Working environment that values the individual and group differences within its work force
- Company that embraces diversity of employee backgrounds and perspectives
- An environment whereby diverse employees feel valued, welcomed, integrated and included in the workforce
Place that everyone has equal access to opportunities
- An environment that encourages open communication and information sharing along with accountability and responsibility1.
Take a look at Champions for Change’s video to distinguish between diversity and inclusiveness, and confirm what workplace inclusion is – https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=-Lz-KavdxNg2.
Put simply, inclusion puts diversity into practice – it creates a culture of staff who are positively involved, mutually respectful and connected. The differences in each person are not just acknowledged and built into the workplace, they are valued and supported.
Diversity can bring together people with different cultures, lifestyles, backgrounds, experiences and perspectives to the table. These differences only become powerful through inclusiveness – these qualities are figuratively collected from the table by the whole team and treated with the value and respect they deserve.
Thank you for reading our first blog on Inclusive Workplaces, the first in a series of three focusing on inclusiveness. Our next blog will focus on the benefits and barriers to inclusive workplaces.
- Siyana Sokolova, “Characteristics of an Inclusive Workplace”, LinkedIn article, 12 May 2016, https://www.linkedin.com/pulse/characteristics-inclusive-workplace-siyana-sokolova/, accessed 20 August 2020
- Champions for Change “What is an Inclusive Workplace Culture?”, https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=-Lz-KavdxNg, 23 November 2018, accessed 25 August 2020.