If you go alone, you’ll be faster, but there is an enormous price to pay. A price that is no longer adequate for the 21st Century – where collective intelligence and human skills are more critical than ever before.
Today’s leading organizations and most forward-thinking leaders understand that diversity and inclusion is much more than a buzzword, it’s a business strategy with potential to drive organisational performance, increase innovation, and contribute to engaging and retaining talented employees. At REDSCOPE we have been pioneers in developing and training the Inclusive Leaders the world needs today. These people-oriented leaders are able to tap into the abilities and motivation of their teams, and genuinely commit to diversity and inclusion of different talents and groups.
Inclusive leaders are values-driven, emotionally intelligent and act in alignment with their personal values. They know it is a strategic priority to bring different talents into the “new normal” of today’s digital world. They know the importance of bringing in a balanced ratio of women and men, of different origins and ages. They know how crucial it is to create space and use the biggest talent pool in Europe and the world: the 61% of university graduates who are women.
Being aware that he/she does not know everything, an inclusive leader does not only ask a lot of questions and listen actively, he or she is also aware that the diversity in the team, the different experiences, knowledge and backgrounds create space for better and more innovative solutions. Put together they stand for a growth mindset, for the willingness to continuously learn and humility not to (have to) know it all.
Below are the 10 Tips of the Inclusive Leader – and feel free to adapt to your context:
- Hold yourself and others accountable to the creation of a culture of diversity and inclusion. Walk the Talk.
- Communicate Inclusion and gender balance as a strong ambition and priority. Weave it programs and processes.
- Develop your boldness and long-term resilience, as there are no “magical fixes” when it comes to people. Act upon your convictions and principles even when it requires personal risk-taking.
- Learn about unconscious bias and the weight of stereotypes in your context. Improve yourself, learn about diversity, and be a model of self-awareness and commitment.
- Don’t be afraid of challenging bias and requesting change. Do not tolerate discrimination, intolerance or sexism, even if micro.
- Be curious and open about people, especially those who are different from you. Listen actively.
- Empower people: groom and provide opportunities to all. Mentor and develop under-represented groups of people. Give visibility opportunities to all.
- Admit mistakes, learn from criticism and from different points of view
- Allow time in your weekly or monthly agenda to discuss D&I and assess progress.
- Show the example also in your work-family balance, including in parental leave, working hours, holidays, etc. Build a flexible family-friendly culture.