Most people in the world have been to or worked in a traditional office setting at least once. We all know that workplaces aren’t perfect, but what about when it comes to inclusion? Do you know how important it is? Inclusion matters because it helps everyone feel comfortable and welcome at work. This leads to more productivity and higher employee retention rates. But what does inclusion mean?
Unconscious bias is a real thing
Unconscious bias is a real thing, and it exists in all of us. Whether you realize it or not, your brain has been programmed with stereotypes shaping how you see the world. The good news is that while we can’t control our brains’ reactions to other people’s appearances, we can be aware of them and try to mitigate their effects on our behavior. Here are some common examples of unconscious bias:
- Racial stereotypes (e.g., seeing an African American as dangerous)
- Gender stereotypes (e.g., seeing men as better suited for leadership roles than women)
- Religious beliefs (e.g., viewing atheists as immoral)
Diverse teams make better decisions
Research has shown that diverse teams are more innovative, creative, effective and productive. Diversity in the workplace is vital to have better communication systems and are more cohesive and resilient when faced with challenges—all of these things lead to more substantial results.
Diversity fosters creativity
A large body of research shows that diverse teams are better at coming up with ideas that are outside the box and can also look at problems from different angles. Diversity means a broader range of experiences and perspectives, which means more information being shared across the table. The result is a more creative environment where people can share their ideas freely, build off each other’s thoughts, and ultimately come up with better solutions to problems.
Inclusion increases your talent pool
Inclusion means that different team members are invited to share their thoughts and opinions. They have a chance to be heard, which helps them feel welcome, valued, and respected.
When you include people who usually wouldn’t be included in the conversation, you get more ideas for solutions—ideas that might otherwise never have been considered or explored because those voices weren’t being heard before.
When everyone feels comfortable enough to speak up—without fear of judgment or criticism from others—there’s an increased chance for collaboration and innovation across all levels of an organization.
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People want to work for inclusive companies
A recent survey by TINYpulse found that 80% of employees want to work for an organization that values diversity and inclusion. This number is higher than any other metric asked about in the survey, including salary or benefits (76%), culture (73%), and mission/values (69%).
Diversity is important in the workplace for many reasons; this is what Intuit experts believe in it. They say, “When diversity and inclusion work together, they improve the job experience for employees. But they also improve the performance of the company as a whole.”
It’s not just about being inclusive; it’s about giving your company access to broader ideas and perspectives that can lead to better products, services and decisions. Diversity also benefits employees by making them feel more valued and included in the organization and helping them be more creative at work. We hope this article has given you some insight into why it makes sense for businesses, large or small.