A casual office space, young professionals sit collaborating around a table. A woman stands at a wall covered in different-colored Post-It notes.

The Key Elements of an Inclusive Workplace

Inclusivity is not just a trendy buzzword to place on company brochures.

It is a meaningful, impactful, and even profitable idea that can drive businesses and industries forward. Firms that prioritize an inclusive culture will reap the benefits of happier, healthier employees and more productive teams. With top candidates having their pick of positions, firms would do well to modernize their culture to help attract talent during the hiring process.

So, inclusivity is good. But how do we get there? As an executive search firm who has worked with dozens of employers in Boise and surrounding areas, we have noticed several key features of the most inclusive workplaces. Here are our top five.

Emphasized by Management

In contrast to a grassroots approach, inclusivity must start at the top in order to take hold. Every supervisor and team lead should be updated on the company’s goal to become more diverse and inclusive, so they can then lead by example.

Trying to motivate and mobilize employees to engage in a certain mindset is near impossible if that mindset isn’t already in practice by their managers. In weekly meetings, strategy sessions, marketing materials, and team events, it should be evident that the leadership has placed an emphasis on being inclusive and hearing all voices.

Responsible Engagement

One of the most important ways to foster inclusivity is simply to engage your employees in an appropriate and responsible manner. Make them feel valued, because they are. Your people are your most important asset, and connecting with them in a way that conveys your appreciation for their time and talent, as well as acknowledges them as a person, can go a long way.

For starters, don’t put up figurative walls between managers and entry-level employees. Encourage friendly conversation about personal interests, family members, weekend plans, etc. if and when it is appropriate. The more personally connected your team feels, the more comfortable they will be sharing their ideas and preferences.

On that front, provide ample opportunities for employees to share their opinions and insights. Ask about their impressions of the new technology or the current team structure. Take their thoughts into serious consideration when crafting your business strategy.

A Safe Environment

Safety is part and parcel with inclusivity. In a physical sense, your office should have top-notch security, clean facilities, comfortable seating, and ideally, individual restrooms. These touches invite a wider swath of the population to feel comfortable and work well in your space, which helps your business in the end.

On a more conceptual note, providing safe opportunities for employees to engage in fun and low-pressure activity with one another. In the mountains of Idaho, it’s extremely common for employers in Boise to schedule outdoor team bonding events such as hiking, paddling, or brewery tours. Making these get togethers a semi-regular occurrence can help foster camaraderie and inclusivity within your team.

Inclusive Hiring Practices

Your workplace isn’t stagnant – it is constantly adapting and changing due to the influx of new talent. Each addition to your team alters the dynamic slightly, so adopting an emphasis on inclusion must extend to your .

If you do not have a dedicated leader for diversity and inclusion in your business, now may be the time to develop one. Many human resources jobs prepare professionals for dealing with inclusivity-related concerns in the workplace, so you might consider internally promoting to fill this role. Alternatively, working with an executive search firm to help secure the right individual for this specific human resources job can help the trajectory of your business for years to come.

Your hiring team should be focused on finding the most qualified candidates that fit your culture – wherever they come from. While pedigree can help, make sure your hiring managers are giving a fair shot to those candidates who may have all the business acumen necessary to succeed, but may not have gone to the illustrious schools.

Plentiful Resources

Finally, in order to continually reinforce and strengthen your commitment to inclusivity, your firm should have a variety of resources that your employees can tap into. An HR team of good listeners that can alleviate stressors in the workplace is invaluable. Networking groups specifically geared towards women and minorities can be immensely positive tools for fostering inclusivity and career success for your teammates.

For your workplace to remain inviting and inclusive for the future, you must expend consistent effort to make it so. In order to bring about meaningful change, serious initiative is often required!

TalentSpark – An Inclusive Company Helping Strengthen Others

At TalentSpark, we are proud of our heritage. Our recruiters have a firm grasp of the Idaho recruiting market from years of experience, and we are confident we can serve your team’s needs. If you are looking to fill finance, accounting, or human resources jobs, look no further than the experienced professionals at TalentSpark. We pride ourselves on being Idaho’s premier executive search firm, working to optimize your company culture by sourcing the right talent. Check out www.talentspark.com to get in touch with our team and learn why Boise employers love working with us.