“If we cannot now end our differences, at least we can help make the world safe for diversity.” John F. Kennedy.
The late US President call to “make the world safe for diversity” holds true today. Everyday ‘diversity’ is targeted, challenged, abused, segregated, and/or feared. Bias, ego, and differences creep within society and act as a barrier to the development of the nation. The same differences often find their ways to our institution which is quite sad and demotivating.
India being one of the sixth wealthiest countries with a total wealth of $8,230 billion is home to many multinational companies. Many offshore companies have their offices in India. Others are looking to expand their wings in India. But not all succeeds as cognitive bias, emotions, and social influences often affect the environs of the workplace. Though not evident in general but still it can have a detrimental effect in the retention and productivity of the company.
Identify the unconscious biases
The first job is to identify some of the grey areas with high reporting of discrimination. Ethnicity, disability, education, religion alongside gender, age and social status are some of the main areas to be covered before moving to the next ladder of success. Any organisation must try to build awareness so that the employees can know how unconscious bias affects their nature of work. Do let your team members know that unwitting discrimination can lead to mistrust. Team leaders must encourage their team members to review, question and analyze their own personal potential biases and assumptions.
Foster the feeling of Unity in Diversity in the team
According to research, the success of any organization with diverse backgrounds is always more. Evolve a state-of-the-art program that gives the individual sense of pride in the team and also in organization. Promote values of freedom, openness, innovation and a sense of collective responsibility. Keep the window open for the exchange of ideas and hear the opinion of every single team member, so that they can feel a true sense of belonging.
Arrange for a keynote session on Better Than Normal Diversity & Inclusion by Hitesh Ramchandani.
Hitesh’s keynote speech is titled “Better Than Normal Diversity & Inclusion In The 21st Century“. This keynote prepares leaders to not just survive, but strive in today’s increasingly international and diverse business environment. Hitesh challenges the conventional D&I methods and explores 21st century techniques to adapt and evolve to suit the needs of today’s workforce.
As our workforce becomes inevitably more diverse and inclusive, organisations need to learn how to leverage this to their advantage and use it as a catalyst for productivity & profits. This can only be done once Hitesh explores and uncovers unconscious biases which lead to our D&I decision making process, such as recruitment and promotion.
This interactive keynote is not just a speech, but an experience as it delivers new ideas, wisdom and actionable insights that the organisational workforce can implement immediately to achieve “Better Than Normal Diversity & Inclusion In The 21st Century”.
Acknowledge holidays of all cultures
Do acknowledge ethnic, and religious holidays and celebrations. This creates a positive sense of self and a respectful understanding of others. A team leader before winding up the meeting can ask the colleague in the group how they plan to celebrate the holiday. He can ask them to share pictures of the special day. These small steps can bring a big change in the team.
Focus on People
Apart from deadlines the team leaders must also take time to analyze strength and weaknesses in the team. Instead of assigning multiple roles to everyone, it is better to assign specific projects and responsibilities to employees with the appropriate skills and experience. This can help in developing employee strengths and can lead to improved performance.
With a great understanding of different cultures, an organization can provide a variety of perspectives and solutions to problems. So its always better idea to include team with members of diverse ethnicity, age, ability, or religion in the organization.