Diversity, equity and inclusion has been a buzzphrase in the last decade. Many companies have hired diversity officers (some positions soaring 100%+ in the last 5 years). And yet while many companies have placed diversity, equity, and inclusion as a key priority item; some have failed to move past optics. Words without action is … well just words.
Companies needs to see past DE&I as a just a ‘nice to have’ but a need to have. After all, diversity in the workplace is a key metric of success for businesses and companies. One study by McKinsey found that companies in the top quartile for gender diversity on executive teams were 25 percent more likely to have above-average profitability than companies in the fourth quartile—up. Other studies have echoed similar findings.
"There's no denying the importance of diversity in the workplace—it's a valuable business decision and an asset to all employees.” - Elise Awwad
For companies that are beginning their DE&I journey, we list some helpful resources below that move DE&I past the check-in-the-box initiative to a reward journey.
Books on DE&I in the workplace
1. The Loudest Duck: Moving Beyond Diversity while Embracing Differences to Achieve Success at Work (by Laura A. Liswood). The book advocates for a meaningful approach to diversity.
2. Belonging At Work: Everyday Actions You Can Take to Cultivate an Inclusive Organization (by Rhodes Perry). This book suggests simple actions leaders can take to make employees feel comfortable and capable on the job.
3. We Can’t Talk about That at Work!: How to Talk about Race, Religion, Politics, and Other Polarizing Topics (by Mary-Frances Winters). This book suggest a way to approach tough conversations rather than skirting it under the carpet.
4. Blindspot: Hidden Biases of Good People (by Mahzarin R. Banaji and Anthony G. Greenwald). This book addresses some of the unconscious biases that we, as humans, all have.
5. Subtle Acts of Exclusion: How to Understand, Identify, and Stop Microaggressions (by Tiffany Jana and Michael Baran) - This book demonstrates how to avoid alienating group members with microaggressions or subtle passive aggressive phrases, andit presents a formula for building trust and rapport between team members of all backgrounds.
Resources for women
1. Business Professional Women's Foundation (BPW) — The BPW Foundation advocates for women in business.
2. Million Women Mentors (MWM) — MWM is commitment to connecting girls and women with mentors in the STEM fields.
3. National Association for Female Executives (NAFE) — NAFE provides networking and career advice for female executives.
4. Women in Technology International (WITI) — WITI aims to provide resources for women break into the tech industry and connect with their peers.
Resources for minorities
1. American Indian Science and Engineering Society (AISES) — AISES is an organization specifically for American Indians in STEM fields.
2. Latpro — Latpro is an online community that connects bilingual professionals with jobs where their skills can be put to good use.
3. Minority Business Development Agency — With loans, grants and powerful research & data, this organization has helps minorities enter the world of business. They also collect research and data related to minorities in the business world.
4. National Society of Black Engineers — The National Society of Black Engineers offers leadership training for its members.
DE&I Certifications and courses
1. Cornell Diversity & Inclusion Certificate Program- Starting with a look at employee engagement, then identifying interventions surrounding unconscious bias and specific diversity and inclusion strategies, this program is appropriate for anyone committed to going beyond mere compliance to build a truly aware and inclusive work culture.
2. FutureLearn: Understanding Diversity and Inclusion - Unconscious bias, supporting diversity, and ethnocentric and ethno-relative mindsets are a few of many topics covered in this course that takes a few hours.
3. Unconscious Bias, Grovo - Broken into 20 “microlessons” at around three minutes each, this training will help managers understand how their bias affects their business decisions and how they can overcome it.
Depending on your organization, you may want to have bespoke solutions. Our HR business consultants at iota may be able to help. Feel free to reach out.