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3 Reasons Why Diversity & Inclusion Are Important Post COVID-19

Updated: Jan 18, 2022

As the entire world has taken a step back during the times of COVID crisis, the case has been the same with issues like diversity and inclusion. Many companies have already stopped prioritizing D&I assuming that such risks only pay off well when the times are good. However, the truth is that diversity and inclusion are going to stand as two of the most important factors contributing to the survival or growth of companies during or post-pandemic.

If your company is one that has had mixed success with D&I efforts previously and are not sure about continuing the practice, here are three reasons why we believe you will benefit from it.

  1. Inclusive leadership can be the key to managing virtual workforces

With more companies navigating the new work-from-home culture, one can expect employees working from their personal spaces for the foreseeable future. As a consequence, the technology used in the process is also taking us into people’s homes and personal lives in the most unexpected ways.

Hence, the role of inclusive leaders has become more essential as they are the ones who seek out and value individual perspectives to ensure a sense of belonging, and build high-performing teams. The world needs more of such leaders to connect, engage and effectively manage virtual teams for the most complicated tasks as video screens being the new mode of business communications still require the right exhibition of compassion, kindness, and curiosity.

The inclusive leaders will help more companies in accepting the different worldviews and lifestyles of their employees. So, while there are people who feel exposed by giving a view of their personal lives, the best leaders can lean in with empathy. As a result more people would listen to each other within the team and value perspectives in a disrupted environment.

  1. An inclusive culture makes teams efficient at solving problems

Resilience is going to be the key to make companies succeed through the current crisis. This is the reason why companies with the most inclusive cultures are also found to be the most resilient.

However, to create resilience, the company culture has to be authentic. It should be embodied by the leaders and implemented in the corporate responses for all kinds of crises including employee health, safety, benefits to customer service, etc. The overall goal should be to ensure that all employees feel protected.

Diversity and Inclusion can also boost innovation and agility. COVID brought industries down to their knees and reimagining businesses became the new necessity. New and innovative ways of working, new products, new services, or even new business models will help companies win in the future. This however, also highlights how all of it can only be achieved when you get new ideas from diverse backgrounds and through collective efforts made by balanced teams.

Inclusive leaders will have their focus set on creating a company culture based on trust, and where all employees feel comfortable in sharing their thoughts so that more new ideas can happen.

Companies that become successful at building inclusive cultures and resilience also attract the best of talent, which together with diversity results in improved performance from time to time.

  1. Inclusion helps in building efficient teams that manage risks and spot new opportunities

Prior to COVID, teams that were not built on diversity always had to bear the risk of being out of sync and faced difficulty in coping up with the realities and crises. The stakes are even higher now as companies continue to face complex challenges that can only be solved through collaborative thinking. Yet, many companies still choose homogenous leadership based on one culture/nationality or similar background.

Companies that are built on diverse teams across their business and functions draw the maximum benefits. But to achieve this, the right balance is also essential i.e there shouldn’t be just a few women in functional roles such as HR or communications, nor should the company hire a few people from different cultural backgrounds only for the purpose of representing global markets.

As we are dealing with unexpected levels of uncertainty and risks, it is obvious that companies that are able to draw on a wealth of perspectives in their teams will eventually perform better in our new collective, global reality.

Last but not the least, once employees return to their offices, they will crave and value work that is going to offer them a source of social connection. With diversity and inclusion, companies can take advantage of this opportunity to transform their employee and client experience.

If your company has had mixed success with Diversity & Inclusion previously, now is the time to transform your employee and client experience.

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