It’s in our nature to approach people with similar looks, personalities, interests, attitudes, and social standings. We feel more comfortable sharing our space with people who are our age and gender, who share our political views and think in a way similar to ours. In short, we tend to connect with people who are just like us and that’s how we come to form a group or become a part of one. Making your group a diverse one might be quite difficult due to these aspects of human nature. However, forming a diverse group comes with great benefits for its members and here you can find out how to accomplish that.
Be mindful of your job descriptions
The first thing you have to pay attention to is how and where you recruit new employees. Job descriptions and ads can play an important role in what group of people will be attracted to your job offers. If you want to recruit younger, fresh out of college people, then you can’t expect them to have much experience for the job they’re applying for. On the contrary, if you want to attract older, experienced people, you have to take into consideration platforms they use to look for new jobs. You have to find out where diverse candidates are and how to reach out to them. That’s why you can’t post job offers in the same places if you want to recruit non-traditional candidates or ones from specific groups.
Mix your teams
The most important thing in your organization should be people’s contribution to the workforce. A lot of people lack the confidence to offer their solution to a problem, to share an idea or an innovative approach they came up with. This happens because they have a fear of rejection or because they don’t feel like they belong to the group. When you mix your teams with members of different backgrounds and experiences, people will have a sense of equality and they’ll feel more comfortable to voice their ideas. This will also allow you to better understand your customer base and address some issues from different perspectives.
Create opportunities for additional education
Lumping together people from different backgrounds doesn’t mean that everything’s going to work out great from the start. Some people have concerns that broadening diversity can cause unrest among the group and we usually distance ourselves from anything that’s unknown and different from us. To overcome these problems, you can hold team meetings where people can talk about some difficulties they face every day. When other members learn about all those different challenges, they will become more acceptive and their bond will grow stronger. That’s how the whole team can improve tremendously.
Establish mentorship systems
Fostering diversity can also be accomplished by setting up mentorship systems. When you pair people of different ages, genders, cultures, or any other characteristics, you allow them to develop a new approach to a lot of things they’ve experienced so far. Pair women with men to challenge and overcome bias and stereotypes. Pair younger with older generations and let them learn from each other. Older generations have more experience and younger generations have different tools and different approaches to how they handle things. This kind of environment will welcome diversity, improve and learn from it.
We live in an age when we’ve become more interconnected than ever. We come into contact with people of different backgrounds every day on our jobs or in our neighbourhoods. Every one of us has valuable life experience and sharing it with other people can only enrich the community. That’s why having a diverse workforce can only expand your talent pool and improve your business. We shouldn’t alienate ourselves from differences, but learn to embrace them and grow together.