Many businesses have taken time over the last year to examine their workplace culture. As leaders, we always knew but were reminded of the importance a good workplace culture holds and its direct correlation to the success of an organization. Until recently, this may have sounded a bit cliché, right?
Get the culture right, and everything else will follow. Well, to say that the last year has tested that sentiment in many ways would be an understatement; however, amid social and economic challenges, some companies have soared, in part, due to good workplace culture.
People are faced with the daily decision to rise with courage and to put forth their best work in trying times.
People are faced with the daily decision to rise with courage and to put forth their best work in trying times. But, it makes you think, what type of culture causes people to commit and actively engage daily?
In many instances, whether in their community, at work or even in their own home, some people do not feel their experiences are recognized or that they can be their whole, authentic selves. On top of this, being immersed in a workplace culture where they feel they are unable to be their whole selves can be exceedingly deflating. What is the price to the organization when some, perhaps many, employees feel deflated? The better question is: what is the likelihood of that person continuing to make the same decision to rise and commit in a culture where they can’t be their whole self? This is where the conversation begins in understanding the impact of culture.
We often utilize Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion (DEI) programs as a vehicle to get the conversation started by creating space through awareness. And awareness is often overlooked as a useful tool to understand and improve communication and comprehension. But even as many people express they want to be heard, they do not honestly know where to begin. What is more, many companies do not know what to do when it comes to building a more inclusive culture. How do you build bridges to connect the broad spectrum of experiences that create a diverse culture?
It all comes back to awareness. When awareness of DEI is intentional, there is space to share stories, ask questions and build relationships. Then you can hear the collective voice of your organization.
Learning and Growing Together
Here at NAVEX Global, one of our core values is BRING IT! You cannot have such an action-driven value and not challenge yourself again and again. We have committed to BRING IT by recognizing, supporting, and celebrating our diversity through our DEI Team. This team is one of the strongest voices within our company – though by no means the only voice – that encourages everyone to bring their whole selves to work every day.
Most recently, our DEI Team has worked diligently to create awareness around diversity, equity, and inclusion, specifically with respect to racial justice. One of our strongest tools is the production of our “DEI Minute” videos. Each 60-second video points to educational, informative resources on diversity that are curated by our team or others here at NAVEX Global to help us all become more aware and informed. (These videos are quite brilliant, if I do say so myself.) The team crafts these videos to recognize and honor our diverse communities while also encouraging all employees to use their annual ACT (Acting and Changing Together) Day of Service to promote racial justice in their community.
This month, our DEI minute is all about recognizing and celebrating Juneteenth. Creating this awareness has opened a wonderful space for employees to share how they celebrate this day and stories of other employees around the globe being inspired to learn more.
Expanding awareness while being intentional about understanding other’s perspectives creates space for all of us to share experiences and be more authentic. It is also where wonderful conversations begin.
For us to learn and grow together, we must keep the conversations going. Understanding the voices and the experiences that comprise all of your culture can help foster a committed and engaged workplace, giving each individual space to be their whole selves.