HOW DO I BEGIN THE CONVERSATION ABOUT DIVERSITY?

June 17, 2022
This week superstar CEO Dan Fellows, alongside fellow panellists Jackie Handy (Managing Director, Runway Global Limited) and Emma Freivogel (Founder, Radical Recruit), joined forces to talk all things diversity at APSCo Media, Marketing & Sales Sector Webinar: How to Maximise Your Candidate Talent Pool and....

What divides us pales in comparison to what unites us.

~ Edward Kennedy

This week superstar CEO Dan Fellows, alongside fellow panellists Jackie Handy (Managing Director, Runway Global Limited) and Emma Freivogel (Founder, Radical Recruit), joined forces to talk all things diversity at APSCo Media, Marketing & Sales Sector Webinar: How to Maximise Your Candidate Talent Pool and Increase Engagement. The webinar covered everything from physical office accessibility to neurodiversity, and for Get-Optimal, one crucial point surfaced: how do you open the conversation about diversity hiring? True diversity in your job ads can’t be achieved without this vital conversation, but the fear of offence often overrides any curiosity.

If you’re struggling to start this conversation, this week’s blog is for you. Here are our top tips on creating the diversity dialogue; that’ll open your job ads up past that cliche little paragraph hiding at the end.

Ask

Our number one message is one of consent. Keep in mind, when beginning a conversation on diversity - that it’s not the role of the diverse individual to educate. Whilst many are very happy to do so, be sure you’re not placing anyone in a situation where they’d feel uncomfortable or forced into disclosing any information they don’t want to or are unable to. You can do this easily; “Are you in a place to educate me about your culture/gender identity/ disability?” you can also frame these questions as constructive business feedback, for example - “How do you think we can improve inclusivity in our workplace?”. It helps to ask what didn’t work - especially concerning creating diverse job ads and hiring procedures - with our everchanging landscape, don’t just assume something is right because it’s always been the way you’ve done it. Be open to change! It’s the only way anyone grows.

Lead by example

To expand on the above point, it’s essential that if we’re looking for a workplace where someone can fully be themselves, then we lead by example. A culture where we're honest about how we’re genuinely feeling will demystify the idea that the higher the chain, the more tightlipped you must remain, and in turn, encourage conversations that will often naturally lead to sharing of perspectives and experiences. Once you get talking, you’ll find no human exists who hasn’t encountered a moment where their perspective shifted. Lead by example, create a culture where these moments can be shared, and you get to a place where you won’t even need to ask for a diverse input.

Listen

All is well and good to ask, but are you listening? Often during intimate or personal conversations, the space to listen is vital to people feeling understood. This is called psychological safety. Try to reduce distractions such as email alerts, text messages or social media invasion, and remember - your first thought might be the one that needs to be challenged. Try not to dismiss or punch down in your responses; instead - ask for clarifying information and try to genuinely occupy the same atmosphere as the colleague you’re talking to. If you’re struggling to see why the shared issue bothers them, try learning about microaggressions - imagine this happens to you daily. It might start to get annoying.

Great. You’re now ready to make your ads genuinely diverse. The next issue is, where do you find the time? Why not leave it to us to Get Optimal?  We’ll help you increase the quality of your candidates by optimising your Job Ads, so there’ll be a diverse talent pool of applicants to grow your business.

Collaborate with us at Get-Optimal today. Book a consultancy and take control of your recruitment marketing, don’t continue to speculate. Make the change. Be the change, and work differently.

Nico Wylde

Get-Optimal Marketing & Comms

Nico@get-optimal.com