One of the most influential novels in the English language, Wuthering Heights, received mixed reviews when first published. The book is worthy of all praise but its author, Emily Brontë, had to use a male pseudonym to publish and, above that, Victorian-era readers thought that it must have been written by a man. The Brontë household produced three remarkably talented female writers. The others, Charlotte and Anne also needed to publish under male pseudonyms. Adequately, one of the reviews of this novel at the time read: “The action is laid in hell, only it seems places and people have English names there”.
Fortunately, society has started to move forward and policies that ensure diversity and inclusion are implemented throughout. More women are elected as MP in the United Kingdom, 29%, and 48% of the Icelandic Parliament are women. Next to ethnicity, age, nationality, religious affiliation, sexual orientation, maternity, education and marital status, gender equality is one of nine angles of diversity. In this context, inclusion means that differences are acknowledged and receive equal treatment.
There are differences, agreed, but while achieving diversity and inclusion in the workplace aims to those people who work in the organisation are representative of the wider society, “people with different lifestyles and different backgrounds challenge each other more. Diversity creates dissent [but] without it, you’re not going to get any deep inquiry or breakthroughs.” (Paul Block, CEO of Mersant). A mix of people skills, experience, and perspectives can trigger progress, innovation, reduce business risk, and improve performance because of different interpretations of the same task and, therefore, collaborative efforts that can lead to better outcomes (Inclusive Employers).
Companies that embrace diversity “in all aspects of their business statistically outperform their peers by 80%” (Deolitte Australia, 2013). There is a growing demand for organisations to invest in diversity and inclusion as managers have observed that there is a greater variety of ideas and knowledge that persists within diverse teams allowing to break through regular patterns and keep up with the constantly shifting internal and external demands. A diverse and inclusive team combines prominent features and achieves an ‘upgraded’ workforce.
CultureScope is a tool that can improve diversity and inclusion and bring about positive changes. A CultureScope assessment identifies collective, expressive and empowering behaviours on an individual and produces relevant information that can be used to make comprehensive decisions, manage differences, propose relevant mentoring sessions, provide learning opportunities and create the space to voice opinions.
For organisations to be diverse and inclusive they need to be viewed as collective, expressive, empowering, achievement-oriented and team focused, because these are behaviours that express good leverage of diversity and inclusion. A CultureScope assessment can show that embracing differences does not mean putting everything in boxes; by identifying personal and organisational behaviours with respect to diversity and inclusion, CultureScope suggest how the two of them can be best aligned. It can also provide insights on the behaviours that could to be improved to create an organisational culture that uplifts the performance of employees.
Each organisation needs specific responses to their challenges. Whether this response is global mentoring programs, e-learning modules or multicultural talent management, CultureScope provides organisations with guidelines to create an optimal culture that reinforces their workforce to be inclusive, by guiding individual behaviours toward the organisational behaviours that underpin differences. Albeit talent acquisition on individuals is still very important, monolithic thinking deters vigorous development. Diversity and inclusion do not imply merging individual characteristics but finding the way to empower, combine and align different perspectives, experiences and skills to face the challenges of a truly collaborative effort. CultureScope can show you how to do it.