Did you know businesses with greater diversity are 70% more likely to capture more markets? The business world has become more interconnected, and addressing discrimination in the workplace is essential. Discrimination can dent employee morale, reduce productivity, and hamper your business’s ability to attract and retain the best talent. It can also paint your business in a bad light to the public, driving potential customers away. Fortunately, you can eliminate discrimination in your business with the right strategies, including the following.
1. Develop a Written Policy Defining Rules and Procedures
Your company should have an anti-discrimination policy with clearly stated terms, rules, and procedures. Each company’s policy may vary, depending on the nature of the business and culture. But that notwithstanding, each policy should highlight a worker’s right to work within the establishment. Your policy should highlight a zero-tolerance stance for discrimination based on gender, race, or disability. It also helps outline what punitive measures to take if this occurs.
2. Build an Inclusive Company Culture
Discrimination thrives in a business environment that lacks an inclusive culture, so feel free to consider this. The more you encourage diversity, the easier it is to build an inclusive culture. Try promoting employee resource groups or affinity networks to help celebrate diversity and provide support for underrepresented workers. You should also promote collaboration and respect among your workers, as this can create a sense of belonging. If you have a team with different races or backgrounds, encourage cross-cultural interactions between them. And don’t ignore the diverse contributions of your workers. Use initiatives like diversity awards and employee of the month recognition to appreciate diversity in your company.
3. Familiarize Yourself with the Anti-Discriminatory Laws
It’s almost impossible to address and eliminate discrimination if you’re unfamiliar with anti-discriminatory laws and best practices. Start by understanding what discrimination means in your operation or line of work. Depending on your field, business location, and local policies, it could mean different things. So, research to familiarize yourself with all the l requirements. You can also seek legal assistance or work with experts and discrimination advocates, so feel free to consider this. This way, you can develop new policies that effectively ward off discrimination in your business.
4. Encourage Reporting of Complaints
Create a safe and confidential reporting system that allows employees to report incidents of discrimination without fearing any form of retaliation. Workers should not feel hesitant when they need to come forward with grievances. But reporting is not enough. Ensure that you address every complaint you receive with all the promptness you can muster. That’ll show your dedication to your workers. Take the time to investigate each case before appropriately addressing them. While you want to eliminate discrimination, you don’t want to lose a worker to a false complaint or allegation. Ensure the investigation process is transparent, and provide regular updates to the affected parties. Also, workers who have experienced discrimination should be allowed to speak with employment law firms for assistance if their complaints are not addressed.