Employers, Is Your Workplace Diverse And Inclusive? Considerations To Help End Workplace Inequity.

Haynsworth Sinkler Boyd, P.A.
Contact

Haynsworth Sinkler Boyd, P.A.

An accepting workplace reflects diversity and honors differences. Intolerance of minorities and differences continues to be evident in society and, thus, will also be present in workplaces. Businesses remain behind societal trends as a general rule.
 

Diversity and Inclusion have been topics at the forefront of most companies for years and yet equity for under-represented employees remains a statistical reality. A recent article published in the Harvard Business Review offers statistical support for the realization that diversity and equity remain tepid in most sectors:

  • Black people account for 12% of the overall workforce but only 8% of management.

  • Among Fortune 500 companies, the number of Black CEOs peaked in 2012. There were 12.

  • 43% of the workforce is white, but 77% of high ranking VPs are white.

    • Less than 10% are Black.

  • Female representation is diminished along the corporate pipeline.

    • One in five are women.

    • Women are more likely to have judgment questioned.

    • "One in ten women leaders indicates women are well-represented," according to 45% men and 28% women surveyed.

    • The biggest obstacle women face is the first step up to management.

  • Black women and women with disabilities:

    • Face the most barriers to advancement.

    • Get less support from managers.

    • Receive less sponsorship than other groups of women.

Companies must look inward to determine what role they play in perpetuating this reality and implement measures to address and begin to remedy this reality. It is the right thing to do. It is also necessary for long-term sustainability. Even those companies excelling in respectful workplaces must continually assess the workplace for areas needing growth.

Employers might consider:

  • Are we diverse from the top down?

  • Is our employee population diverse? Or is it homogenous?

  • Is there disparity in management diversity?

  • Are there examples of leaders from under-represented groups?

  • How do we manage diversity?

Often you hear employers discuss prospective employees in the context of whether they "fit our workplace culture." Employers should challenge that thinking and consider what is meant by “workplace culture” and in what context it is applied. If the purpose is ensuring a positive and encouraging workplace, then the inquiry is one that should not hinder workplace culture. Conversely, if the meaning refers to similar backgrounds to those represented in the workplace, whether that be cultural, societal, or economic, this could indicate an intolerance of differences. Employers desiring to hire those similar in thought and like-mindedness are also not seeking to develop a diverse workplace. Differences reflected in all aspects of the workforce serve to suggest a diverse and inclusive workplace while the converse suggests the opposite.

Creating or maintaining a workplace that honors differences and welcomes diversity requires first understanding how under-represented individuals feel in the workplace and if they sense they are valued.

DISCLAIMER: Because of the generality of this update, the information provided herein may not be applicable in all situations and should not be acted upon without specific legal advice based on particular situations.

© Haynsworth Sinkler Boyd, P.A. | Attorney Advertising

Written by:

Haynsworth Sinkler Boyd, P.A.
Contact
more
less

Haynsworth Sinkler Boyd, P.A. on:

Reporters on Deadline

"My best business intelligence, in one easy email…"

Your first step to building a free, personalized, morning email brief covering pertinent authors and topics on JD Supra:
*By using the service, you signify your acceptance of JD Supra's Privacy Policy.
Custom Email Digest
- hide
- hide

This website uses cookies to improve user experience, track anonymous site usage, store authorization tokens and permit sharing on social media networks. By continuing to browse this website you accept the use of cookies. Click here to read more about how we use cookies.