Diversity is only half of the D&I equation. So, whilst galvanising a talent pipeline is the first step for many organisations, to be truly inclusive, employers need to address workplace culture.
You can discover practical steps to achieve diverse recruitment here, but if you want to foster a sense of belonging and inclusion within your organisation, here are some proactive ways organisations of every size can move beyond diversity to focus on inclusion and belonging.
1. Coaching and mentoring
If representation and diverse role models in senior positions is currently an issue for your business, coaching and mentoring can be an effective way to provide talent with aspirational role models, while also developing the soft skills required for progression.
2. Identify and sponsor a protégé
Representation and support should begin at the highest level of an organisation. In her recent research and Harvard Business Review article, Stephanie Bradley Smith suggests ‘sponsorship’ is the most effective way to progress diverse talent, especially women, into c-suite roles. The most recent and effective example of this would be the Joe Biden and Kamala Harris partnership. Here the relationship was very public and beneficial to both parties; it is through this lens that a sponsorship should be undertaken.
3. Tailored professional development plans
Invest in bespoke professional development plans for your team, to ensure they get the support they need to excel and achieve their career aspirations. Work with them to identify barriers and holes in their skill set, before curating a program specially tailored to their needs.