Inclusion in the workplace has long been a guiding principle for businesses. Creating diverse and inclusive workplace settings is one of the most difficult tasks we face today. It’s certainly not out of the question. For a handful of businesses, however, it is tough.
Culturally inclusive practice is important for any organization. Many people think that hiring employees who belong to different race, ethnicity, gender, culture, age, and sexual orientations, is the practice of inclusion. However, that’s not what inclusion is all about. It’s not just enough to hire people from different backgrounds, but about how these individuals are valued, welcomed and respected.
Many businesses have found out how to be diverse, but not how to be inclusive. Let us discuss inclusivity, how critical it is in the workplace, and how to create one.
Cultural inclusion recognizes and respects the needs of people of many cultures, as well as their distinct contributions.
- It entails continuing public awareness campaigns, which may include negotiations and compromise.
- It improves employee engagement while lowering employee turnover and increasing earnings and productivity.
- Inclusion aims to promote understanding while combating racism, homophobia, and sexism.
Individually, we are accountable for contributing to and inspiring inclusiveness, regardless of our function in the workplace. It begins with a shift in how we think about inclusion and isn’t nearly as complicated as we make it out to be. It only takes getting to know people on a personal level and making them feel accepted for who they are.
Significance of Workplace Cultural Inclusion
Workplaces of all kinds, from tiny firms to large corporations, are debating the merits of diversity and inclusion. Unfortunately, businesses frequently overlook inclusion in a rush to diverse workplaces and hire people from all walks of life. Diversity without inclusion, no matter how well-intentioned, is useless.
Cultural inclusion is becoming increasingly important as companies look for new methods to boost employee satisfaction and recruit top talent. With the economy and workplaces becoming increasingly worldwide, it’s critical that businesses take steps to provide a welcoming, respectful, and valued environment for people of many cultures, religions, countries, races, and ethnicities.
Leadership must lead by example in terms of actual cultural inclusion in the workplace. Rather than viewing cultural inclusion as a checkbox to be checked, your firm will reap the benefits of unlocked employee potential and more successful business connections when it welcomes meaningful transformation.
Budgeting and achieving fundamental organizational transformation are two of the points listed below. Others are straightforward and alter the way coworkers communicate inside their division. We recognize that you won’t be able to adapt nearly everything on the list, so use it as a starting point for conversations and ideas that will lead to increased inclusion in your workplace.
How to Create a Culturally Inclusive Environment
A culturally inclusive environment needs clear communication, respect, and understanding of individuals from a broader perspective. Here are few steps how:
- Make Spaces that are Accessible
Accessibility is a crucial feature of office design that is frequently disregarded. Work within Health and Safety rules to provide proper clearance around workstations and through entrances. If you don’t have an elevator, work with your building management to ensure that you have ramps where there are stairs, or that you have meeting room space on the first floor if you don’t. Even if no one you deal with is impaired, one of your clients could be.
- Employees’ Religious and Cultural Holidays should be Recognized
When religious and cultural holidays arrive, take advantage of the chance to educate coworkers by working with employees who are celebrating. By completely comprehending the significance of an event, we begin to comprehend and accept these practices into our lives.
It’s how we learn to use appropriate language rather than being offensive. We may be understanding rather than obtrusive by asking to be educated. Instead of exclusion, it’s all about inclusion.
- Quiet Space for Religious Observance
With diverse employees comes diverse cultural practices. Organizations must focus on this for the satisfaction of the employees. It might be quite unsettling for employees to pray in public. If you have the space, consider building a nondenominational religious room that is open to all employees.
This lessens the stigma attached to religious practices and promotes open dialogue on what may be a touchy subject. Employees can communicate their requirements to management when space is created, rather than irritation growing during employee absences.
- Recognize any Biases
We all have unconscious bias-based tendencies. It’s critical to recognize them and attempt to resolve them. To test for bias reactions:
- Imagine switching the individual you’re dealing with to someone else.
- With your newfound insight, make sure that all of your decisions are inclusive, regardless of your initial biased reaction.
- When your reputation is on the line, don’t take chances with inclusion.
Why Does Workplace Cultural Inclusion Matter?
According to a Glassdoor survey, 67 percent of job searchers believe workplace diversity to be a key consideration when considering a new job opportunity. Employees will not feel included if they are working in a setting that is not genuinely respectful and encouraging.
According to a Gallup poll, 45 percent of American workers had encountered discrimination and/or harassment at work in the past year. These personnel will eventually leave the company in pursuit of a location where they are valued. Employers are back to square one, and they must resume their search for a diverse workforce.
Another reason that cultural inclusiveness in the workplace is important is that, as a result of globalization, employees must learn how to communicate effectively with colleagues and clients from all over the world. The importance of inclusivity in global communication strategy cannot be overstated.
Understanding (or, at the very least, learning to be sensitive to) a diverse range of cultures, races, and ethnicities is essential for business relationships such as market expansion. According to a Business Review published in 2018, organizations with greater diversity earned 19 percent higher innovation revenues.
Cultural Inclusion – A Global Perspective
We can ensure that everyone gets access to tradition, culture, and the arts through cultural inclusion. However, there is growing concern about the lack of cultural participation for those groups in society that are already marginalized. Learners have unique educational requirements and disabilities, for example (SEND – Special Educational Needs).
The benefits of having access to culture and the arts for students with SEND are well documented. Some students with autism, for example, may struggle with social relationships. Still, they may find theater freeing since the structured architecture alleviates some of the worries that come with social circumstances.
Similarly, because actors with visible impairments effectively invite the audience to interact with both their drama and their handicap, theater helps break down barriers and dispel preconceptions.
Inclusion fosters culture, and culture fosters inclusion. Therefore, it’s critical that we prioritize cultural inclusion in the months and years ahead to ensure that all children and young people may reach their full potential.
As a society, we are becoming more aware of the importance of issues such as the environment, diversity, neurodiversity, and cultural diversity, as well as the role of the arts in our personal well-being. Many people believe that the arts, culture, and tradition are important aspects of ensuring long-term happiness.