An inclusive workplace culture is an ideal set-up for many companies today. Organizations are more open to job seekers from different backgrounds. Likewise, candidates have started considering the work culture and environment on top of salary offers when they are looking for jobs.
According to JobStreet’s Global Talent Survey, more than 50% of Filipino job seekers will refuse to work for employers that do not align with their beliefs, which include diversity and inclusion. Research also shows that having diverse talent in the workplace leads to higher levels of productivity and performance as well as improved employee retention rates.
However, inclusivity within the workplace is not something that is nurtured overnight. It takes a whole organization – from leaders at the highest level to the junior team members to have a deeper understanding and commitment towards the brand values and culture and displaying authenticity and acceptance.
In the recent Australian-New Zealand Chamber of Commerce Philippines (ANZCHAM Philippines) Virtual Luncheon, JobStreet Philippines Country Manager Philip Gioca tackled the importance of genuineness and inclusivity at work. Committed to leading compatible hirers and jobseekers together, JobStreet encourages companies to conduct inclusive hiring practices to retain quality talents and boost productivity.
Higher management plays an important role
Leaders, executives, and managers play a vital part in modeling an inclusive culture and behavior to the other employees
“It starts from the top. Whatever the top tolerates, it is tolerated by the entire group. And so, what the top behaves that’s exactly how the members of the team and the company would behave,” said Gioca.
The company’s policies and behaviors begin at the top level of management, and this helps establish corporate culture. The role of the higher management is more than just making decisions that affect the whole organization, but they also set the expectations for the way each employee treats one another. For example, tolerating situations that negatively impact the members of the team affects the performance and success of the company.
Establish good communication
Now that most companies are practicing hybrid or remote work setups, communication can be an issue due to language barriers and varying communication styles or preferences. Hence, Gioca advised employers to maintain good communication in the workplace as it is integral in making inclusivity more genuine.
One way to address this, according to Gioca, is by utilizing a standard operating procedure. For instance, important announcements and updates are sent through emails, meetings are done virtually, quick task-related messages are sent to the team chat, and more. It is also encouraged to conduct catchups, regular virtual activities, and town halls with the employees to enhance company culture.
Sensitivity and flexibility within the organization
With the workplace becoming more diverse, JobStreet also advised hirers to take employee differences into consideration when implementing inclusivity, as there can be activities or gestures that can be normal to one candidate but are offensive to another.
To manage this, employers are encouraged to conduct sensitivity trainings, especially for those who actively hire candidates that are from another race, with different gender identities, have disabilities, working moms, among others. Gioca added that adopting programs based on the needs of their employees also helps showcase the company’s sincerity in achieving inclusivity. One such example is by assigning newly hired employees to peer mentors who can provide support for new members to adapt to the organization.
In relation to creating programs anchored on employee needs, Gioca likewise suggested that workplace flexibility is also key to attaining inclusivity. Since the pandemic, hybrid working, and flexible arrangements have introduced a new perspective of work. Companies where people can stay in the office at their own pace, at their own time, will enable employees to work in a way that best suits their needs. Moreover, ensuring that those who work from home have the same benefits and opportunities as those working in the office generates a more inclusive workplace.
To make hybrid work efficient, JobStreet recommends having regular alignment meetings to make sure that the team is on the same page and to also fast-track decision-making within a diverse organization.
“Inclusivity means it’s not just allowing people to be tolerated but it’s important that people are valued and appreciated because many things can happen in diverse teams. You won’t believe what they can do, and they can reach impossible things together,” said Gioca
To learn more about workplace advice, visit jobstreet.com.ph/career-resources/.