Equity and Inclusion In Crisis

Experts suggest it is more important than ever to focus on Diversity, Equity and Inclusion efforts as a strategic priority as thepandemic creates uncertainty and brings longstanding racial inequities to the fore.

To help clients respond to this moment and assure resiliency, experts recommend communicating around existing commitments—or the intention to improve them.

Leading with internal assessments, organizations should be transparent about their progress and look at diversity and inclusion as foundational, not relational. 

And continuing to collaborate with stakeholders across companies – C-Suite, leadership, boards, HR, legal and employee resource groups– will support lasting change and create value for employees and clients/customers

Experts suggest careful thought and attention to communicating around these important areas: 

  • Approach furlough, lay off and return-to-work decisions thoughtfully. For example, furlough and lay-off decisions based on tenure could erode a firm’s recent progress in inclusive hiring.
  • For employees working from home, be cognizant of any inequities in resources, technology, scheduling and other circumstances that may limit performance.
  • When reimagining safe office spaces, pay attention to equal access to amenities, inclusive spaces, leadership, collaborators and clients.
  • Account for fragmented information flow during the remote work period. Ensure all returning employees are equipped with information they need to be successful.
  • Even as workforces shift, maintain safe ways for employees to raise concerns about discrimination and harassment.

For more resources, visit Time’s Up, McKinsey, Deloitte and the Harvard Business Review.