Today, protecting revenue and brand image means defining and communicating with audiences as individuals, including people … If your senior leaders are not fully committed to the cultural shift that is needed, it won’t happen. Inclusive leadership is more than making sure the room isn't full of the same perspectives and backgrounds. Seven diversity and inclusion best practices to help strengthen your leadership culture and grow your company’s bottom line. Maybe refuse to begin the interviewing process until obtaining a sufficiently diverse applicant pool? This may take practice. We tend to focus on surface-level diversity, when deep-level diversity can also bring in new thoughts and ideas. Diversity in America is on the rise. It helps us work together and empathize with each other. In education, an inclusion specialist is a certified teacher who has specialized knowledge of the current principles and techniques of educating students with significant disabilities in general education classrooms. Inclusive education approaches differences and diversity affirmatively, recognizing the value of such differences and the learning opportunities that such diversity offers. Now that we’ve talked about why it’s so hard to talk about, let’s get down to the juicy parts. The Importance of Communication and Inclusion Published on ... are team building and communication. Tom has a background in PR and journalism but has been working in internal communication for the last five years. Simply getting your leaders to talk about diversity and inclusion is not enough, they need to be able to articulate what diversity and inclusion mean to your organisation and why it’s so important. When you build a house, you need tools for each job. These communication skills are the building blocks to enable open, honest, and constructive conversations about D&I. While these groups are extremely important, I believe that internal communication should be striving to create organisation-wide safe spaces for these discussions. Which one is most likely to get a successful solution? Best practices in AAC are identified and multiple examples of their implementation are presented. Truly committing to a diverse workforce calls for deep evaluation of practices and biases. This provides a platform for people to share their experiences, but also creates opportunities for others to listen and to think about their role in supporting them and creating a more inclusive environment. Take the Inclusive Culture Pledge for 2021. Effective communication is a manager’s greatest tool in rallying groups toward a common cause. We did this recently for Disability History Month where employees got the opportunity to hear from several Paralympians about their experiences and struggles and how they had overcome them. In the area of financial literacy, individuals will find it difficult to participate in what they don’t fully understand, and vice versa. We must work to confront those thoughts and actively unlearn them. Tom McGovern is an internal communications specialist currently working in higher education. The Roles and Duties of an Inclusion Specialist. They don’t know how to talk about it. Remember, no conversation is going to be perfect. Based on research I have previously undertaken in this area and my experiences as an internal comms practitioner, I have pulled together a short briefing paper with practical tips and guidance to help fellow internal communicators to drive diversity, inclusion and equity in their organisations. Should you broaden where you advertise for company jobs? Being inclusive means remembering that communication is as much about listening as it is about talking. This has not only helped to raise the profile of these groups and any issues they are facing, but it has shown that the organisation and its leaders are fully committed to diversity and inclusion and to making a difference. Ensure that your internal communication tool is a safe space for employees to share their thoughts openly. Giving every individual a voice and sense of belonging within the organisation. Without taking a deep dive into each system, companies should consider looking at their hiring and talent management systems, and leadership development systems. Not only will employees appreciate your openness, but it shows that the organisation is taking responsibility and demonstrates your commitment to change. This could be done through annually publishing your employee demographics or your gender and ethnic pay gap data, or simply through a communication which states: “this is where we are right now, but this is our vision for where we want to be”. During the workshops, employees had the opportunity to mix with people from different areas and levels of the business and from a variety of backgrounds. They help everyone feel heard, involved, respected, and trusted. Encourages, supports and enables people to use whatever ways of understanding and expressing themselves which they find easiest. In my current organisation, we go beyond wishing people a happy Eid, Diwali or Hannukah; we take the opportunity to educate employees about the festivals and the religions and this has been well received. An inclusion teacher is a special education teacher who works with inclusion students. Finally, you might be confronted with a reality that implicates you're creating a negative experience for someone else. It might seem nice at first, but what happens when everyone has the same ideas? Julie Yoon partners closely with organizations to build learning solutions, assessment strategies and leadership development pipelines that reinforce organizational goals and values. Functions and Roles Diversity and inclusion is only as effective as the functions with which it becomes integrated. By always turning to the same people for ideas, we create a culture that maintains a homogeneous status quo. Colleagues were tasked with discussing various diversity and inclusion issues and collectively developing solutions which they then pitched to the rest of the room. The Global Leadership Forecast found companies with a diverse workforce have more sustained and profitable growth. Define what diversity means to you – and the ‘WHY’ It’s easier to tell a coherent story when you fully … Regardless of how you’re doing as an organisation, being transparent about your current position is crucial. Educate and Empower Your Leadership Team. Remember, no conversation is going to be perfect. Diversity and inclusion (D&I) means more than just recognizing and appreciating—and dare we say embracing—our differences. Inclusive communication is an approach to communication which enables as many people as possible to be included in that interaction. They help everyone feel heard, involved, respected, and trusted. Remember, your reality can be very different from others, even on the same team or in the same environment. 2020 was a year that brought into sharp focus the racial and social inequalities that are still prevalent in today’s society. ( Log Out /  So, once you’re prepared to talk with your team about diversity and inclusion, be sure to use Key Principles. This paper examines the role of augmentative and alternative communication (AAC) in fostering the successful inclusion of students with the most severe disabilities in general education. Statistics show companies with leadership in the 25 percent for racial and ethnic diversity were 35 percent more likely to exceed the median financial return for their industry. A good place to start is ensuring that the business case for diversity and inclusion and how it impacts business success and performance is understood throughout the organisation. It is your role to create a bully-free space. What are you doing to drive diversity and inclusion in your organisation? Learn More. So, once you’re prepared to talk with your team about diversity and inclusion, be sure to use Key Principles. There can be a tendency in communications to roll out the same ‘go-to people’ but it’s important to use a diverse range of colleagues and accurately represent your workforce. Lesson Planning In an ideal inclusion classroom, the special education teacher and regular education teacher engage in co-planning. How can we make it part of the fabric of work rather than an add-on initiative? This approach: Recognises that all human beings use many ways of understanding and expressing themselves. To help foster a diverse and inclusive culture, internal communication should assume two key responsibilities within all organisations: Here are my top five tips for how internal communication can achieve these deliverables and successfully drive diversity, inclusion and equity in your organisation. So, what happens when your nice, homogeneous team and the diverse team take on the same problem? It makes people uncomfortable, so they settle for the status quo rather than make changes. Modern companies have a choice to either know their audience or realize the shift in revenue as a consequence. But remember, it’s also a positive sign that you are learning, growing, and becoming a more inclusive colleague. On top of that, your team is likely going to compete against a team of people with all different skills, perspectives, and backgrounds. Everyone should consider what they’re bringing to the discussion before it starts. But let’s consider how things would be without a diverse workforce. The widest impact comes at a system-level. Diversity of thought results in better solutions and innovation, which leads to better products and services. They should also consider compensation and total reward systems, product and service development systems, and external partnership systems. First, we will define accessible technology, and give examples of both accessible technology and inaccessible technology. Let's imagine how easy and comfortable it would be to get things done if everyone were just like you. If done thoughtfully, D&I conversations can have a huge positive impact on the people taking part in them. It isn’t just our individual and collective workplace habits we need to rethink. Because it means different things to different people, it's tough to talk about. Everyone needs to feel safe to share their thoughts, take risks, and bring their authentic selves to work. Genuine concern and interest are a must. ( Log Out /  Thank them for sharing their insight, and commit to growing from it. Asking your leaders to be visible sponsors of your diversity and inclusion activity and to lend their voice and influence to communications is one of the most effective ways to get your employees listening and to drive cultural change. No problem, give us a call at +1 (800) 933-4463. I want to be clear that this isn’t about tokenism; it’s about making sure your communications are inclusive and are representing your current and future workforce. Unfortunately, this isn't something that can happen overnight. For diversity and inclusion to become a strategic business driver, leaders must understand which functions must embrace diversity and inclusion—and then work to … We'll be in touch soon. Tell stories to pass on cultural cues about ideal behaviors and show how inclusion can get misunderstood. As well as attending network meetings and listening to and actioning feedback, they act as a spokesperson for each group and provide regular updates from the networks in our monthly Executive newsletter. Get in touch and let me know! From the annual department address to daily email, careful audience consideration is vital in determining how accurately audiences receive messages. By failing to be transparent and disclose such information, it gives the perception that you are trying to hide something and shirk accountability, which suggests that you aren’t taking it seriously. How can you address each of the points above? The school was considered important in creating an environment that enabled inclusion, particularly through positive peer relations, prevention of bullying and help from support staff. You can discuss topics in a way that doesn’t offend others by using core communication skills. Ideally, we’re going to want both surface-level and deep-level diversity. That’s exactly what the Interaction Essentials are: tools for conversations. Research shows that interacting with diverse groups of people increases innovation, problem solving, and general thoughtfulness. We're surrounded by prominent images and experiences of violence against marginalized people, which can be triggering and traumatizing. Listen, observe, and ask questions to make your platform more inclusive.” We interview a diverse panel of women to discuss the state of diversity and inclusion at the workplace today, as well as tips for leaders for how to build inclusive teams. Communication has been derived from the word ‘communice’ which means ‘to share or to make common’. But the goal should be to develop understanding. It should be a stalwart item across all your channels. Tom also has an MBA and is passionate about supporting businesses and people to be at their best by revolutionising the way they communicate. Each of these changes start with meaningful conversations. Communication plays a vital role in all spheres of life. Since joining DDI in 2018, Julie has worked with clients across a wide range of industries to create customized programs focusing on high-impact development and accelerate leaders’ success. Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. The quickest way to tap into deep-level diversity is by accelerating the hiring and retention of a diverse workforce. From January for 12 months, we’ll be providing all Pledging organisations with free support on progressing their diversity and inclusion agenda. Tailors teaching for all learners. How about, “What is the role of communication in promoting workplace diversity?”. The directive principle to guide state policy Article 45 states that "free and compulsory education should be provided for all children until they complete the age of 14". Change ), Diversity and Inclusion in British Football, You can download the paper here or read it below. As for children with learning disabilities, it is even more self-evident. | National harmony, political inclusion and reconciliation should be the pillars of Jordan’s internal policies. So, let’s talk about one of the underlying issues of diversity in the workplace: we don’t know how to talk about it. To highlight the role of information and communication technologies (ICT) in fostering the social inclusion of persons with disabilities in all aspects of life. Affinity groups, such as the staff equality networks I referenced earlier, are a common way of creating these spaces. In addition, businesses can get a boost through company engagement, retention, and financial health. Before you begin discussing diversity and inclusion, it’s important to build a safe environment. This is a principle of inclusive … Recognize bias. So, if we can actualize why we don’t talk about D&I, perhaps we can pinpoint ways to start having those conversations. Nobody has to share their trauma or negative experiences for the benefit of educating others. Specifically, with the contributions to information and communication technology, the education sector has been able to benefit greatly. Transparency is a key component in all communication efforts, but it’s even more important when you’re talking about an important subject like diversity and inclusion. But despite the benefits, people find diversity discussions to be tense, scary, and downright uncomfortable, especially at work. Internal communication is fundamental in achieving this. First and foremost, diversity and inclusion must be championed from the top. A diverse and multigenerational workforce can be a challenge to reach. Most companies today are working hard to get these benefits of diversity. Instead of avoiding these conversations, maybe you could ask a different question. There is a plethora of research out there which shows that embracing and valuing different thoughts, ideas, experiences and identities makes for more successful and profitable organisations –  the ‘Delivering through diversity’ report by McKinsey is one that I refer to often. Establish a sense of belonging for everyone. Most likely, you'll find that innovation and new ways of thinking will come to a screeching halt. This includes religion, sexual orientation, or ability. Informing, educating and supporting all employees to adopt inclusive attitudes and behaviours in all aspects of their working lives. Without a sense of safety, people waste energy worrying about what will or won’t be accepted instead of being productive. If you were entering a new market or launching a new … These communication skills are the building blocks to enable open, honest, and constructive conversations about D&I. But why is it so difficult to also talk about diversity and inclusion (D&I)? Not all technology is accessible, however. This includes some major areas, like sex, race, age, visible disabilities, or religion or culture, which we’ll call surface-level diversity. Being an essence of any and every society, it helps the people to share and understand the meanings. 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