dancing people inclusion
Photo by Jens Johnsson on Unsplash

What is Inclusion?

If you only focus on the increase of your team’s diversity but do not take steps in regard to being inclusive, you will not proceed and it will be highly probable that new and diverse recruited talent leaves your team. That’s why Diversity & Inclusion should always be combined and be a joint effort.

In this picture, you see what we mean by inclusion. Being inclusive means that (all different types of) people will genuinely become part of a group. An inclusive work environment appreciates all the available talents, sees them and utilizes them. Different ideas and different types of peoples are respected, heard and everyone feels at ease and at home.

Inclusion is overall a way to interact with a variety of people in order to get the best result. Inclusion is there not a “nice to have” it’s a must-have for organizations and companies. The more inclusive you are the better to can reach your mutual goals. Diversity is more about numbers and percentages and inclusion is particularly about behavior, ethics, and rules. It has been said that while diversity is being “invited to the party”, inclusion is being “asked to dance”.

Being inclusive means that:

  • Everyone’s opinion counts. Regardless of status and position
  • Leaders stimulate the exchange of different perspectives and are open to it themselves;
  • People can share their opinion in a professional manner, without fear for their position;
  • People work together at a shared goal and respect each other’s differences;
  • Cultural and gender differences are embraced, not minimalized;
  • People approach each other in an open and interested way. They take time to listen to each other, instead of telling what to do.

Inclusion, however, is not:

  • Everything is possible and allowed;
  • Give in to everyone’s way;
  • Having the illusion that we can all be friends;
  • To agree to something in order to prevent conflicts;
  • Or to deny cultural and gender differences. We are all different and that’s good!

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