New research reveals how to create a culture where everyone feels included at work

A new report, ‘Everyday inclusion: What really works?, reveals for the first time the proven steps to take to create a culture where everyone feels included.

The report is published by Business in the Community (BITC) in partnership with Santander and the Global Institute for Women’s Leadership at King’s College London,  and resulted from assessing more than 60 separate academic studies, the majority of which took place in actual workplaces.

Everyday inclusion: What really works?’ reveals that companies which want to take steps to make their culture more inclusive should:

  • Have a task-oriented approach, with contact between diverse groups and chances to learn about others’ experiences.
  • Recognise the differing concerns and experiences that different groups experience rather than relying on blanket statements about diversity or an ‘identity blind’ approach.
  • Make the most of leaders and line managers: one study even showed that an environment in which leaders were seen as ‘ethical’ had less workplace bullying.

BITC decided to undertake the research in 2019, when our survey revealed that almost half of employees in Great Britain had experienced unwanted behaviour at work, even though many employers were investing in programmes and training to make their working cultures more inclusive.

Charlotte Woodworth, Gender Equality Campaign Director at Business in the Community, said: “Even before the pandemic hit, many British workers were experiencing micro aggressions at work, with a knock-on impact on their health and wellbeing. But we also know that it can be hard for employers to stamp out such low-level, pervasive bad behaviour. This research gives organisations the clarity and confidence they need to make sure their culture works for everyone. 2020 has shone a bright light on the divisions that exist between us. It’s time for employers to play their part in healing them.”

Damien Shieber, Head of Culture, Inclusion and Experience at Santander, said: “At the heart of our inclusive culture at Santander is an ambition to create a thriving workplace that promotes diversity and inclusion, prioritises wellbeing and develops our people’s skills. This report, with its findings and summary actions, will further support our focus and approach in promoting a culture of respect and everyday inclusion – to enable everybody to feel valued and to be their true selves.”

To learn more, visit www.bitc.org.uk

 

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