Racial equity is a state that is possible only when one’s racial identity is no longer responsible for their future or their opportunities. It is one part racial justice, one part cultural empathy, and one part education. It seeks to dig up the root causes of inequities, not just how they manifest in the workplace. This means it’s time to reevaluate or eliminate any policies, practices, or attitudes that reinforce a disparity of outcomes determined by race or ethnic background. At CBV, we guide leaders and organizations on a learning journey to better understand, embody, and embrace racial equity and justice. Here are 3 ways to help you creating racial equity in the workplace.
1. Address the Lack of Racial Equity Head On
Do not pretend racial equity exists and your company is all one big happy family. Acknowledge the cultural and professional disparities as well as any implicit bias that exists. Have an honest, open conversation.
Speak to your whole company or choose a select group of leaders and influencers. Include people of different races and ethnicities to be part of the discussion. If you don’t have a variety, that speaks volumes.
Define what racial equity is and what it looks like. Provide a brave space for anyone to express challenges they’ve faced when attempting to support workplace equity.
This will help you identify problem areas, give a voice to Black and other minority employees, and educate any white employees about a dilemma they may not even know exists.
2. Develop a Targeted Action Plan
What did your employees tell you? Were you listening? What has their experience been, and what needs to change in your organization?
Black and minority employees have the right to greater inclusion and changed behaviors from coworkers. And everyone should feel safe and comfortable sharing their experience and encouraged to talk about race inequities.
How will you enhance anemic diversity policies or eliminate practices that advance inequity?
How will your hiring and promotional processes be adapted in order to be more inclusive and transparent?
Use this information to formulate a targeted plan of action to address racial equity issues in your organization.
3. Foster a Racial Equity-Centered Culture
Put your actions where your mouth is. Always view your rules, procedures, and policies through a lens of racial equity. Consistently apply your new policies and processes and regularly examine how your organization, teams, and programs operate.
Train your team to creating racial equity in the workplace and eliminate implicit biases. Host mandatory seminars to continue developing and maintaining a racially balanced environment. Put every new hire through this training, so they start off educated and prepared to embody your company culture.
Support your staff and promote racially neutral practices in your company. Show them that inclusion is highly valued and should be rewarded. Normalize open and honest communication about every employee’s race-related concerns at work, at home, and in their community.
If your leaders or organization needs a guide to better understand, embody, and embrace racial equity and justice, reach out to our team. Let’s take your learning journey together!