HOW TO REACT TO DIVERSITY DISRUPTIONS?
When we implement diversity practices without corresponding inclusion practices, it causes negative diversity disruptions in the workplace. The time we introduce diversity into an organization, it can have 3 effects corresponding to whether we simultaneously look into inclusions or not. When there is no inclusion strategy along the with diversity strategy, the diversity plans may either fall flat or cause issues that are negative diversity disruptions.
When we implement a corresponding inclusion strategy, the introduction of diversity into the organization causes progress called positive diversity disruption. In this article, we will delve into the details of the negative diversity disruptions and how we can handle them.
Following are causes of negative diversity disruptions and suggestions on how to react to them:
- Pushing diversity – Pushing diversity into the organization at a faster pace than the culture can cope with will lead to disruptions such as discrimination, affecting employee satisfaction and brand value of the organization. Incorporating diversity into the workplace takes time. It involves a change in the practices, policies, and culture. We need to align this with a well-developed inclusion strategy.
- Opening discussion forums to improve diversity – Opening discussion forums to get an opinion on how to improve diversity can prove to be chaotic, since it may bring out opinions that are non-inclusive, and that affect the other existing employees. This method of attempt at diversity will cause more inclusion issues than the variety of diverse ideas it will bring in.
- Introducing diversity to improve brand value – In genuine attempts at increasing diversity in organizations to improve the brand value is soon identified by most internal employees and possible candidates, since it often is not paired with good inclusion strategies and has a high attrition rate of diverse employees. This approach increases hiring and retention costs for the organization and causes damage to the brand value. Hence, we can handle this disruption by taking a step back and investing in good diversity and inclusion strategies. Even ones that simply serve as a starting point.
- Forming special interest groups – Forming special interest groups to promote diversity and inclusion, causes cliques to form within the company. This may lead to stronger disagreements between groups and lead to conflicts, and disruptions in the workplace. We can form special interest groups with caution. The aim is to include other employees in their culture, a form of knowledge and experience sharing.
The Importance of Dealing with Diversity Disruptions
The method of bringing in diversity is crucial. As a rule of thumb, it needs to have structure and reduce the possibility of chaos. This is because bringing in diversity itself causes enough change and may cause some members enough discomfort. Diversity and inclusion go hand in hand. Without inclusion, diversity efforts are a liable cost to the organization. They cause additional costs due to the negative disruptions they cause.
Hence, to avoid negative disruptions, we must implement an effective inclusion strategy. We can ensure this along with the diversity plans or even better, before the diversity plans. This can be done through awareness programs, workshops, etc., which prepare the existing employees for the surge in diversity.Contact us if you are interested in a diversity and inclusion program that is tailored to the needs of your organization or team.