5 Ways Leadership Can Change the Conversation Around Diversity and Inclusion

One danger of having a strong company culture is that it can be far too easy to perpetuate a culture of sameness where culture “fit” is an excuse to hire people who look, think, act, and build products just like you do. The truth is, diverse organizations and teams are not only proven to perform better, but building an environment where everyone, from any background can bring their authentic self to work is simply the right thing to do. It’s crucial to approach diversity and inclusion (D&I) with humility, vulnerability, and authenticity. At CFIE, our diversity data shares a snapshot of the composition of our company by gender, ethnicity, and age along with our plans for the future to make the organization more diverse and inclusive as we grow.

If we don’t embrace an inclusive culture, it is impossible to speak genuinely to our customers. To lead from the top on inclusion and reinvent the standard of diversity, here are a few best practices business leaders should drive toward.

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When transparency is a core commitment, it’s important that you’re not just sharing what the organization is excelling at, but the harder realities as well. Not only did we find that more and more candidates and employees were asking that we share our work in this space publicly, but we found that when we did, engagement increased. By being transparent and sharing the sometimes harsh realities, our work in diversity and inclusion becomes more inclusive by welcoming input from all.

In order to build a company of generations to come, diversity and inclusion must be bought in by senior leaders as a business priority. Like with any challenge, leaders must dive in and analyze from a business perspective rather than sit on the sidelines hoping the challenge will sort itself out. What will they find? That the topic is hard, messy, and personal, but imperative, for the success of your business, your brand, and your customers.

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