Diversity and inclusion are back in the spotlight. Issues like immigration, sexual harassment and racial justice are in the news almost daily. But it’s not just today’s hot topic—it’s serious business. In a 2017 study of 245 global companies by Deloitte, 78 percent of respondents believe it’s a competitive advantage for a company to have a culture that supports diversity and inclusion.
We know communicating about your company’s commitment to diversity is important, so we’d like to share some of what we’ve learned about the biggest mistakes in D&I communications and how to avoid them.
Mistake 1: Communicating commitment without credible proof, programs or progress
Once a company makes a commitment to diversity and inclusion or refreshes its approach, there’s often pressure to communicate about it. But as soon as you begin communicating, employees will look for evidence of progress and begin asking what has changed. If nothing looks or feels different, employees may become cynical about the company’s intention. If a formal approach to D&I is new for your company, be sure to set clear expectations for how and when you’ll communicate progress.
Mistake 2: Developing messages for recruitment that differ from what’s being said internally
The seeds of retention are planted during the hiring process, and new hires will expect their experience at your company to match what they hear during recruitment and onboarding. Seventy percent of job seekers say that a diverse and inclusive work environment is important. So, if your talent acquisition team is getting candidates in the door partially on your company’s commitment to a diverse and inclusive workplace, be sure their experience once on-board is consistent with what they’ve been told.
We’ve seen cases in which talent aquisition took the lead on diversity and inclusion messaging in the company’s outreach to candidates but didn’t coordinate with groups developing content for other audiences....
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