EVERYONE BELONGS: THE IMPORTANCE OF BUILDING AN INCLUSIVE WORKPLACE

Everyone belongs! Harmony Day is a day for people across the country to acknowledge and celebrate Australia’s cultural diversity.

Held each year on 21 March, it’s an important reminder of the need to promote a sense of inclusiveness, respect and belonging in our:

  • Schools
  • Workplaces, and
  • Broader community
HARMONY DAY AND THE WORKPLACE

Research indicates that businesses perform well when:

  • Employees feel included, and
  • Their workplace is strongly committed to supporting diversity

And with around 45 per cent of Australians born overseas or with at least one parent who was, Harmony Week has always been a popular way for workplaces to showcase and acknowledge their cultural diversity.*

5 WAYS TO CREATE A MORE INCLUSIVE WORKPLACE

When you offer a more inclusive workplace you gain access to different types of people which means:

  • A team of individuals each with a unique perspective
  • More creative ideas and innovation for your business

In addition, companies committing to diversity are also more likely to attract top talent. Here are five ways to help you build a more inclusive workplace culture.

  1. Have an inclusion strategy

Firstly, create a diversity and inclusion strategy with specific action points for upper management. It’s important to:

  • Identify the steps each person can take to improve the culture of your business
  • Make your strategy available to all staff at all levels

Having an official strategy in place helps to solidify your dedication to an inclusive workplace. It also helps show all minority staff members that there is real commitment.

  1. Educate staff on inclusion

Discrimination against minority groups is obviously unacceptable, but there are many people who still have little understanding of what is and isn’t appropriate behaviour. Training your staff is great, but you also need to:

  • Stamp out inappropriate behaviour – such as offensive jokes – to show that you take inclusion seriously
  1. Lead by example

Managers are the most important factor for workplace inclusion. By behaving professionally and standing up against discriminatory actions they:

  • Help pave the way for employees to do the same, as well as
  • Create a safe space for those with concerns to bring them up when issues arise
  1. Look at your language

Review your workplace manuals, contracts and on-boarding documentation to ensure that you are using inclusive language. Always use both male and female pronouns, even if your business is in a predominately male-dominated industry, and:

  • Remove heteronormative language – like husband and wife – changing it instead to spouse, or partner
  1. Respond effectively

No matter how inclusive your workplace becomes, it’s likely you’ll run into issues at some point. So when issues arise make sure you:

  • Deal with them swiftly
  • Always demonstrate zero tolerance for discrimination,
  • Escalate incidents to upper management if the behaviour persists

Finally, remember that even one person behaving inappropriately can have negative effects on the entire workplace.

Everyone belongs! At Labourpower we are proud to be an Equal Opportunity Employer. Our goal is to build a sustainable future with a diverse and inclusive workforce that supports and fulfils the expectations of our valued clients and employees.

To find out more, speak to the experienced team at Labourpower today.

#everyonebelongs

 

*Source: https://www.harmony.gov.au/get-involved/workplaces

 

 

 

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