Feeling Included In The Workplace
Feeling included at work is something we all crave, right? It’s not just a nice-to-have; it’s crucial! And guess what? Building that sense of inclusivity is something every single one of us can contribute to because it makes for better work and better team collaboration.
In fact, according to a recent survey, when employees feel like they belong, there is a 56% improvement in job performance, a 50% lower turnover risk, and 75% fewer sick days.
It’s not just on our leaders and managers to make us feel included; we need to take action too. Especially for those of us in underrepresented groups, it’s crucial that we speak up for what we want. We deserve to be seen, heard, and acknowledged for our contributions. That’s why we need to step up and advocate for ourselves.
Promoting allyship means using our unique position and perspective to build each other up. It’s like a powerful support system that makes the workplace more inclusive and welcoming for everyone.
Consider the following:
- Listen – One of the most important things we can do to promote allyship is to listen more than we speak. One way we can do this is by showing up at events where we can learn more about our underrepresented colleagues. These gatherings are like treasure troves of insights, where we get to understand their struggles both inside and outside of the workplace. It’s a fantastic opportunity to step into their shoes for a bit and really get where they’re coming from.
- Pave The Way– If we want to create an inclusive workplace where underrepresented groups feel valued and heard, we’ve got to make way for their voices to be heard loud and clear. One powerful way we can do this is by being advocates for our colleagues. For example, suppose
you’re in a conversation with your manager, and you know your colleague, Sonya, has some brilliant ideas that could really make a difference. Instead of hogging the spotlight, you take the opportunity to shine it on Sonya. You say something like, “Hey, you know what? Sonya has some fantastic ideas about how we can improve our processes. I think it would be awesome to bring her into the discussion.” Just like that, you’re paving the way for Sonya to step up and be seen.
- Recognize Exclusion – It’s crucial we’re aware of microaggressions when they happen and take action to put a stop to them. For example, imagine you overhear someone asking Mandy, “Hey, Mandy, where are you actually from?” Now, that might seem like a harmless question, but it’s actually a microaggression directed at her. It’s like implying that she doesn’t really belong or that she’s somehow different just because of her background. In moments like this, it’s essential to step in and address the situation. We can have a private conversation with the person who made the comment. Approaching it privately allows us to have an open and honest discussion without putting anyone on the spot. It’s about understanding their perspective and sharing our own, all while promoting a culture of respect and empathy.
When it comes to feeling included at work, having caring and supportive partners can make all the difference. Ensuring everyone feels included in the workplace is critical for a company’s success. Together, we’ll shape a workplace where innovation thrives, collaboration soars, and everyone’s contributions are valued.
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