Imagine you have been hired as the new Diversity & Inclusion Specialist in the Human Resources (HR) department of the organization you currently work for or another organization of your choosing. One of the first tasks you are given is to create a diversity proposal in response to an anonymous complaint (below) that was recently submitted to the HR suggestion box:
I have been working here for 4 years. I am tired of watching the same “Diversity in the Workplace” 20-minute video each January in order to satisfy the company’s annual diversity training requirement. Nothing around here shows that this company values diversity. As one of a few people of color at this company, I feel like I’m just here to increase diversity numbers so the company “looks good” on paper. When are we going to actually do something to recognize all types of diversity? There are more aspects to diversity, besides race, that make individuals unique.
Create a diversity proposal in which you address the following questions:
What is the business case or proposition for recognizing the importance of diversity and inclusion?
How can the organization create a mission and goals to outwardly express and reinforce its commitment to diversity and inclusion? What might the mission statement say to express that commitment?
What are at least 2 short-term actions (less than 6 months) that the organization can take to immediately address some of the concerns expressed in the anonymous complaint?
What are at least 2 long-term actions (6 months to 2 years) that the organization can take to address some of the concerns expressed in the anonymous complaint?
- How can the company enhance its current annual employee diversity training? Why is this training important?
- What initiatives can the company implement to celebrate diversity beyond race?
- How can these initiatives bring employees together to celebrate diversity and promote inclusion?
- What other suggestions do you have to improve workplace culture and messaging around diversity and inclusion?