Diversity vs. Inclusion in the Workplace

Understanding the differences and how they affect the company culture.

Diversity vs. Inclusion in the Workplace

June 29th, 2020

Diversity and inclusion are terms that are often confused in the workplace by being used together, rather than separately. However, they are two different concepts that are both critical to recruitment and employee retention. It can be difficult to understand the differences between diversity and inclusion, so read through our guide.

What is diversity?

Diversity in the workplace is understanding, accepting, and valuing the different personal, physical, and social characteristics of your workers. These characteristics include:

  • Ethnicity.
  • Gender.
  • Age.
  • Education.
  • Cultural background.
  • Physical ability and disability.
  • Religion.
  • Sexual orientation.

True workplace diversity encompasses all the elements that make an individual unique, such as their perspectives, preferences, characteristics, and even their biases.

What is inclusion?

Inclusion in the workplace is the procedures, policies, and behaviors a company puts in place to ensure all their workers' differences and needs are taken into account. The goal of inclusion is to create a respectful company culture and environment where all employees feel comfortable, included, and accepted, and are happy to participate and share their opinions.

True workplace inclusion removes barriers, discriminations, and intolerance to ensure that all employees feel included and supported.

Differences Between Diversity and Inclusion:

Diversity

Inclusion

Refers to the characteristics and elements that make an individual unique.

Refers to the behaviors and social norms that ensure an individual feels welcomed and safe.

A concept that brings different people together in the same place.

Methods and strategies implemented to make diversity work.

Achieved when hiring managers and recruiters strive for heterogeneity and combatting bias in the hiring process.

Achieved when team members feel psychologically safe and included in the workplace.

Relies on inclusion in order to work.

Is crucial for diversity in the workplace to be successful.

Benefits of Diversity and Inclusion in the Workplace:

  • The diversity of perspectives, experiences, and backgrounds boosts creativity and problem-solving and drives innovation.
  • Diversity leads to a larger talent pool, which will attract attention from a wider range of qualified candidates, while inclusion will ensure a higher percentage of talent retention.
  • The acceptance generated by inclusion in the workplace will lead to happier employees, thus increasing productivity and performance.
  • Diverse companies generate higher revenues by capturing new markets.
  • Inclusion policies lower the percentage of workplace harassment.

FAQs:

What is the difference between diversity and inclusion in the workplace?

Diversity in the workplace is understanding, accepting, and valuing the different personal, physical, and social characteristics of your workers. On the other hand, inclusion in the workplace is the procedures, policies, and behaviors a company puts in place to ensure all their workers' differences and needs are taken into account.

What is inclusion vs. diversity?

Diversity and inclusion are terms that are often confused in the workplace but that are two different concepts. Diversity is the "what" while inclusion is the "how," but both are critical to a healthy working environment.

Why is diversity and inclusion important in the workplace?

Diversity and inclusion in the workplace are critical to fostering an inclusive, collaborative, and respectful company environment as well as creating a competitive global economy.

What is an example of inclusion in the workplace?

An example of inclusion in the workplace would be providing non-alcoholic beverages at company events for workers whose religion prevents them from drinking. Another example of inclusion is ensuring that bathrooms are stocked with feminine hygiene products.

How do you demonstrate inclusivity at work?

Employers can demonstrate inclusivity in the workplace by listening to their employers and celebrating their differences.

What are the four types of diversity?

  • Internal diversity: related to or existing within a person, such as age, race, and sexual appearance.
  • External diversity: related to a person but can be heavily influenced or controlled by the person, such as interests, education, and religion.
  • Organizational diversity: related to the workplace, such as job function, department, and work location.
  • World view diversity: factors that a person feels, experiences, and observes that shape their world view, such as cultural events, politics, and knowledge of history.

How do you implement diversity and inclusion in the workplace?

Diversity and inclusion can be implemented in the workplace by training your hiring managers to recognize and guard against bias during the hiring process. Diversity and inclusion training can be offered to employees, and employers can help by acknowledging all religious and cultural holidays, mixing their teams, and offering easy access to employee resource groups.

How do you promote diversity in the workplace?

  • Encourage hiring managers and recruiters to guard against bias and hire diverse candidates.
  • Post your available jobs on niche job boards that specialize in diversity.
  • Highlight your commitment to diversity on your website and in all your job descriptions.
  • Include diverse employees in your interview panel.
  • Provide your employees with diversity training and create inclusive policies.
  • Create diverse teams to promote collaboration and innovation.
  • Organize events that celebrate your employees' differences.
  • Set up an internal communication channel and encourage employees to discuss diversity in the workplace.

Why is inclusion so important?

Inclusion strategies are the behaviors and social norms that ensure an individual feels welcomed and safe. As such, they are crucial for diversity in the workplace to be successful. Without inclusion policies in place, the workplace will suffer from biases and miscommunications that will cause employees to feel unsafe. This means that the company will lose these employees.

What is an example of diversity in the workplace?

An example of diversity in the workplace is that hiring managers will not discriminate against potential candidates on the basis of personal characteristics such as ethnicity, gender, age, education, cultural background, physical ability and disability, religion, sexual orientation, personal interests, etc.