Watch this previously recorded webinar on How to Convince Your Organization that DEI Needs to Remain a Priority for additional research and statistics.
There has been troubling pushback against inclusion and diversity due to political maneuvering, and a lot of noise about DEI work being ineffective. Here is why DEI still needs to remain a priority in your organization and here is what you can share with your leaders to reinvigorate
Diversity, equity and inclusion (DEI) work has surged in recent years, yet is showing signs of softening as organizations brace for uncertainty in the markets they serve. Additionally, we’re seeing a coordinated effort from far-right politicians to fully go to war with “woke”. Between this political pushback and the uncertainty in the US markets, the pressure to reduce costs often results in DEI budget cuts or eliminating the budget all together. Seen more as a “nice to have” than a “must-have,” organizations are signaling a deprioritization of DEI at the time it is needed the most.
We’re still talking about the “Business Case for DEI”?
Yep. Why? Because this is well studied, validated research and unfortunately we need to remind leaders what is in it for them when they invest in this work.
- There will be a global worker shortage of 85 million by 2030 and by just 2025, Gen Z will make up 27% of the workforce. 68% of Gen Z workers are not satisfied with their organization’s progress in creating a diverse and inclusive work environment. Do the math!
- Inclusive teams make better business decisions 87% of the time.
- Firms with more diverse management teams have 19% higher revenues according to Forbes.
- Gender and racial diversity lifts profitability rates 20-36% according to McKinsey.
- There’s ample evidence that companies who lead with inclusive behavior are coming out on top, even amidst backlash and in a polarized environment, because 63% of people buy or advocate for brands based on their beliefs and values.
What other area of your business can produce these returns? While there is a clear business case, organizations that are unwavering with their commitment to DEI do it because of the human case. They see people as their competitive differentiator. While products and services can be easily mimicked, culture cannot. People are one of the only remaining long-term competitive advantages. Younger generations also expect DEI and see it as a non-negotiable when evaluating their employment and buying decisions.
Now is the time for accountability with DEI.
- 80% of employees expect CEO’s to take a public stand on discrimination
- 56% of Gen Z workers would not accept a role without diverse leadership
- 69% of employees said that an organization having societal impact is a strong expectation or deal breaker when considering a job (don’t forget that global worker shortage that’s coming!).
The good news is that 95% of CEOs believe diversity, equity and inclusion are priorities. The bad news is that only 44% have actually developed a formal, actionable strategy. As of late 2022, 55% of HR managers have either had their budgets slashed already, or expect them to be cut in the coming months and DEI is usually the first to go. This has led to 80% of companies just going through the motions without holding themselves accountable.
Ideas to reinvigorate your DEI initiatives:
- It’s time to revisit your strategy and dig in to see where we go from here to reassess and revitalize. In 2020, I saw a lot of organizations jump into BIG initiatives around DEI, but did everyone really plan beyond the initial education and awakening that was needed across their workforce? Did they set metrics to determine what success even looked like at the end of the roadmap? We’re almost 3 years out from that much needed summer of awakening around racial injustice in 2020 – If your organization is committed to this work but is feeling stalled, we need to revisit and reassess your strategy. Schedule a free 30 minute Strategy Assessment Session with our team.
- Right-Size Your DEI Content. As with any social change, it’s a long term effort – DEI is a journey, not a destination. It’s not a check-the-box, one-and-done type of thing; it is a long-term commitment. Again, in 2020 many companies led with massive, time intensive education initiatives while maybe only launching DEI in their organization for the first time. We’re helping clients take a more consistent right-sized, slow drip approach with micro content packages.
- Self-paced and Choose Your Own Adventure Materials. Everyone is joining this conversation at a different level of awareness. Make sure your content offers folks a chance to choose their own learning journey by offering a range of topics from entry level to advanced topics. Our Lead Like an Ally Self-Paced Program learning modules start with entry level individual actions and moves all the way through systemic change.
At Next Pivot Point we have lots of resources to help you facilitate successful diversity and inclusion training. Schedule some time with our team today to discuss where to start or how to do better.