Diversity and Inclusion: 5 Tips for Getting Started

posted on October 22, 2020

October 17, 2020

By Jane Jazrawy, Supply and Demand Chain Executive 

“Diversity and inclusion” have become familiar words throughout the world over the last few months – in fact, Google Trends shows a definite spike. This isn’t a surprise, given the protests taking place this summer.

But, workplace diversity and inclusion have been seriously discussed for many years.

In 2015, McKinsey and Company released a study finding that more gender, and especially more ethnic diversity in senior leadership, tends to equal higher financial return. In fact, they state for every 10% increase in racial and ethnic diversity on the senior executive team, earnings before interest and taxes (EBIT) rise 0.8%.

Why? McKinsey explains that more diverse companies are better able to win top talent and improve decision-making as well as increase employee satisfaction. They are more innovative and able to anticipate shifts in consumer needs, which can lead to a competitive edge.

Since 2015, this study has been repeated and the findings show that the companies with more diversity are still realizing the benefits. Companies that don’t are lagging behind.

But, how do you get to the point where you have enough diversity to start seeing these results? Only 7.4% of the 2020 Fortune 500 CEOs were women – even fewer were CEOs of color — so obviously the world is still struggling with this question. The people encountered at most industry conferences are white and male.

This is the reason that CarriersEdge, in cooperation with Women in Trucking, are launching the D&I (diversity and inclusion) Index next March. This program will survey trucking companies in the United States and Canada and find best practices that are working in the industry and highlight companies that are particularly successful.

Diversifying your company isn’t a one-time solution that comes with a training video. It’s a fundamental shift in how you operate at all levels of your organization.

Here are 5 tips that will help get you started.

1. Take stock

What diversity exists in your company right now? You need to benchmark. Before you can start to improve anything, look at where you currently are. How many women do you employ? How much ethnic diversity is there? How many people speak more than one language? Come from another country? Have a disability?

What diversity exists in your supervisory and senior management teams? Do you have a leadership program? Who is currently participating?

How are you recruiting new talent? How diverse are the new entrants to your company? What organizations are you working with and how much diversity do they have?

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