Are you struggling to hire diverse talent? Team diversity drives business performance, so as well as simply being the right thing to do, it can have real impact. Find out what speakers at Dreamforce had to say on the topic with this round up from Heather Black.
At Dreamforce we found time to go and listen to sessions on topics that reflect our mission, particularly as we look to be proactive in finding ways to do our bit towards fulfilling the UN’s Sustainable Development goals, including number 10 – reduced inequalities and number 5 – gender equality.
Heather headed to the session ‘CEO’s Advocating for Equality.’ There was plenty of discussion and lots of ideas and this session and many others throughout the week, but here are her top 6 take-aways:
Consider how you hire
Think about the process from the very beginning, from a potential candidate’s very first interaction with a company. How truly inclusive is the process, from where you advertise to the language and methods used to communicate the opportunities available? Will it reach the widest possible audience that will give you a broad pool of applicants?
Consider the application scenario and how unconscious bias might be unintentionally having an impact. Is your recruitment process transparent? How are decisions made and who makes them?
Consider your company’s culture
So, you’ve spent a long time making sure your hiring practises are as inclusive as possible, great! However, it is important that this continues to be reflected throughout the culture of the business on a day to day basis. Individuals won’t stay if they do not feel heard and valued. Listen to employees at all levels about how they feel about the business and be proactive about making change and leading from the top to influence culture shift. Happy and valued employees will attract more great people to your business, so make sure your company culture enables everyone to feel included, at all times. Seek to hire people who will contribute to broadening your culture and bring new perspectives, not simply ‘fit’ into the existing one.
Ensure hiring diversity at the top
It is important that everyone in the company – and potential recruits, see that the business is committed to diversity and not merely tokenism. Ensuring that diversity and inclusive hiring practises are implemented from the very top, from the board downwards, will help ensure that it is taken seriously at all levels. Leadership by example is powerful. It will also engender a sense of aspiration – people will see that there are genuine progression routes and opportunities to develop and grow within the organisation.
Measure and set goals
Be intentional and transparent in acknowledging efforts to increase diversity and create equality within your organisation. Set targets and clear identifiers of success, but avoid tokenism. Be authentic, recognise any challenges and seek to open a dialogue that will invite opportunities to identify issues and ideas on how to overcome them.
Be an activist and influencer
Whoever you are, whatever your position, you can advocate for diversity and be a diversity and equality ally. It is particularly important leaders and management take a clear stance and are proactive and vocal, making it clear that this is priority that is taken seriously. Attended events, be open to learning, listening and use that knowledge to effect change.
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