With the increasing spotlight on diversity and inclusion across the country, the two letters commonly associated with the initiative – D & I – have also seen an evolution. Leaders are opting to expand the language used to represent diversity and inclusion – and the classic acronym has added a few letters.
You’ve probably seen acronyms like JEDI (justice, equity, diversity and inclusion) or DEIB (diversity, equity, inclusion, and belonging) making rounds on social media and the HR world lately. The intention is to broaden the meaning of these efforts, expanding the focus to incorporate key aspects of the diversity process. However, while the intention behind carefully selecting terminology is commendable, often the organization doesn’t incorporate a meaningful plan of action behind the acronym making the effort more of a distraction or even confusing to employees. Along with changing the name, organizations need to move from words to strategic actions that increase inclusion.
We’ve seen that often the effort over what to call the program and how it should be accurately represented can take time away from actually beginning or working toward an inclusive workplace. Focusing on the name of your D&I initiative without moving into strategy creation is similar to making statements about supporting diversity that sound good, without actually doing anything about the issue.
In order to move from statements to actual change, your organization will first need to figure out how a diversity initiatives can help you work towards your current operational goals. Without defined strategic goals linked to inclusion, your organization may apply resources without a real understanding of how they will impact inclusion, or try tactics that worked for another company but that may not be appropriate for your organization
To learn more about how your company can impact inclusion through integrating DEI into operational goals, keep an eye out for part two of this article coming soon, or contact us to schedule a time to brainstorm ideas for your unique organization.