Diversity and Inclusion
What is Diversity and Inclusion?
In today's dynamic and interconnected world, the importance of diversity and inclusion in the workplace cannot be overstated. Forbes (1) defines Diversity in the workplace as ‘employing people of different ages, genders, ethnicities, sexual orientations, cultural backgrounds, and education levels.’ Embracing diverse teams of cultures, backgrounds, and perspectives not only enriches organisational culture but also drives innovation and fosters a sense of belonging; and with 26% of employees at their current company feeling like they don’t belong (2), this seems like a prime focus. Not that you need any more encouragement to invest in your knowledge about diversity and inclusion, but Mckinsey’s research continues to ‘affirm the link between diversity… and company financial outperformance’ (3).
This article explores the significance of diversity and inclusion in the workplace, emphasising the benefits of embracing cultural diversity and neurodiversity. It delves into the advantages organisations gain from fostering inclusive environments, such as attracting top talent, driving innovation, and expanding global reach. Additionally, it addresses the challenges associated with cultural diversity and highlights the untapped potential of neurodiverse individuals. By understanding and embracing these aspects, businesses can create a positive and inclusive work environment that promotes resilience, creativity, and productivity.
'26% of employees at their current company feeling like they don’t belong' - Survey Monkey
It's understandable that delving into the complexities of diversity and inclusion can feel overwhelming, but as we embark on this journey together, I am strive to create a safe and trustworthy space where we can explore these topics, gain valuable insights, and foster a deeper understanding. Please feel free to reach out at any point with your questions or insights.
The United Kingdom is experiencing an exponential increase in cultural diversity, shaped by globalisation, migration patterns, and evolving societal norms. The workplace is now a vibrant tapestry of various ethnicities, languages, and traditions. Embracing cultural diversity not only cultivates a rich and inclusive environment but also unlocks new perspectives and approaches to problem-solving having incorporated knowledge from around the world.
Organisations that value cultural diversity gain a competitive edge, attract top talent, and expand their global reach which Harvard Business Review reaffirms with companies being 70% more likely to capture new markets due to investing in diversity in leaderships and correlated market outcomes (4).
Challenges you may face:
Increased demand for mental health support as many Migrants suffer drastically with multiple stressors from ‘the loss of cultural norms, religious customs, and social support systems, adjustment to a new culture and changes in identity and concept of self.’ (5)
Misinterpreted professional communication can pose an issue even in an English speaking workplace as gestures around the world can be misconstrued for example the ‘thumbs up’ in the UK can be interpreted as the middle finger in Iran or Afghanistan (6). This may also extend to the professional expected etiquette of working hours, punctuality, confrontation and respect for senior staff.