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B-Corps are bringing equality and diversity back to the table. They are inviting everyone to join them. Yes, because it’s great for the bottom line, but more importantly because it’s good for the world.
In this blog, we cover five ways that B-Corps are ensuring equality and diversity in the workplace. If if you follow in their footsteps, perhaps it will help your business level up and meet the equalities agenda head on.
1. Make the case for Equalities and Diversity
Addressing equalities and diversity (E&D) in the workplace can feel tricky and could expose people’s biases and vulnerabilities. No company owner wants to be on the wrong side of an equalities issue that’s gone south. Avoiding it isn’t going to make things any easier. Indeed, those B-Corps that are tackling E&D head on and making the case for change are the ones that are building the foundations for growth, profitability and popularity.
According to McKinsey ethnically diverse companies are ‘35 percent more likely to have financial returns above their respective national industry medians.’ And in the UK, ‘greater gender diversity on the senior-executive team corresponded to the highest performance uplift’. Companies that nurture diversity at management level ‘reported innovation revenue that was 19 percentage points higher than that of companies with below-average leadership diversity’, according to a study by Boston Consulting Group.
2. Include E&D in structures
As the governance of companies drives the strategic direction and thus the policies, a diverse governance structure can be one way to impact on the maturity of your companies E&D policies. Diverse governance can have even more of an impact on the business bottom line than a diverse workforce. With one study citing companies with the highest level of gender equality enjoying a ’42 percent greater return on sales’ than their peers.
3. Check your policies
Your policies should formalise best practices, making sure that your company is a great place to work for all of your employees. A policy review might start with the E&D Policy and then dive into your Parental Leave, and Pay Policies, which will provide the focus needed to begin setting out your long-term goals.
Here at Articulate, for example, we are a real Living Wage employer. This means that we commit to a voluntary higher rate of base pay for all of our employees. It helps us attract and retain good people who know we are committed to looking after them.
4. Train your staff
Training for staff at all levels is a great way to take the temperature of E&D in your business and training staff on E&D matters is big business. If you don’t have the confidence to broach this topic alone there are a host of organisations who support businesses with trainings that cover discrimination, unconscious bias, conflict resolution and more. And of course, B-Lab is standing by with their own guidance on how to deliver this training well.
5. Engage your community and stakeholders
Taos Ski Valley in New Mexico hosted job fairs and promoted their job opportunities actively to local high schools. This meant they were able to ‘attract a more diverse candidate pool’ which they detail in B The Change. This enabled them to hire more individuals motivated by the company’s mission, purpose and values versus those just seeking seasonal work.
Get to know what you don’t know
Being a B Corp is great business, but the benefits are not solely reserved for those who are certified. B Lab publish plenty of resources for those who just want to know how to improve their current practices. If you want to improve the equalities, diversity and inclusion in your company or just check out the current landscape you can fill your boots with these resources from B the Change.