Discover organizational development opportunities for growth.
In today’s globalized and diverse work environment, it’s crucial for organizations to have leaders who are capable of leading and managing with an inclusive mindset. Inclusive leaders are those who can create an environment where everyone feels valued and respected, regardless of their race, gender, culture, religion, or any other aspect of their identity. Organizations looking to further inclusive leadership should consider a 3-part strategy: assessing the current state, launching learning and creating a culture to support inclusion.
Assess the Current State and Define the Future
Before any development initiative, it’s essential to assess the current state of your leaders’ knowledge, skills and behaviors regarding inclusivity. This assessment can help identify any gaps or areas for improvement in leadership practices, team culture and policies. Assessment options clients have used in the past include surveys, individual interviews and focus groups. The data collected from these tools can be analyzed to inform future goals and strategy.
Once data has been collected and analyzed, organizations should set clear expectations and goals for their leaders to promote inclusivity. This can include targets for increasing diversity and inclusion, defining specific leader behaviors and actions, and connecting inclusive leadership to performance evaluations.
Focus on Learning: Build Skills and Reinforce Mindsets
To develop inclusive leaders, organizations need to provide training and education to their leaders. This training should cover a range of topics, such as identity awareness, unconscious bias, understanding other perspectives, showing curiosity, building teams, encouraging a range of viewpoints and psychological safety. It’s also essential to educate leaders on the value of diversity and the positive impact it can have on team performance and organizational success.
Developing inclusive leaders is an ongoing process, and it’s important to provide ongoing support to help them continue to improve. This can include providing resources such as coaching and mentoring, creating opportunities for leaders to network and learn from others, and regularly reviewing and updating policies and practices to ensure they remain inclusive.
Create Sustainability for the Future
Leaders play a crucial role in shaping the culture of their teams and organizations. By modeling inclusive behavior and creating an environment where everyone feels valued and respected, leaders can build a culture of inclusivity. This can involve promoting open and honest communication, creating opportunities for employee feedback and engagement, and recognizing and celebrating differences on their teams.
It’s important to hold leaders accountable for their inclusive behavior and ensure they’re meeting the organization’s expectations and goals. This can involve regular check-ins, performance evaluations and recognition for leaders who exhibit exemplary inclusive behavior.
Looking to the Future
Supporting inclusive leaders is essential for creating a diverse and inclusive workplace where everyone feels valued and respected. Organizations can take steps such as assessing the current state of leadership, providing training and education, setting clear expectations and goals, creating a culture of inclusivity, holding leaders accountable, and providing ongoing support to develop inclusive leaders. By taking these steps, organizations can create a workplace culture that celebrates diversity and fosters collaboration, innovation and success.