What if there was one variable that could improve equity in hiring, promotion and pay decisions, foster a more inclusive work environment, facilitate open and honest communications and build a culture of trust, respect and belonging? It’s the elephant in the room. They all see it. They all know it. Many won’t acknowledge it because it is them.
Through their words and actions, company leaders are the single biggest factor in fostering an equitable and inclusive work environment. And while they are happy to publish statements affirming commitment to a fair and equitable workplace and fund social justice organizations, most have turned a blind eye to addressing the real issue . . . leaders who lack the skills needed to facilitate a culture where every employee feels respected, valued and heard.
Whether you are a CEO, CHRO or Chief Diversity Officer, if you are serious about improving diversity, equity and inclusion in your workplace, you must empower your leaders with the skills and tools to make it so. Provide them with coaching and mentoring to encourage new behaviors and hold them accountable for making the changes needed to move your organization forward.
Employees deserve a workplace where they feel respected, valued and heard. It’s time for real change. Because if nothing changes, nothing changes.