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Inclusive Workplace: 5 Easy Tips for Welcoming Diversity

What is an inclusive workplace? True inclusion is built on commonalities. Find out how to welcome diversity into your company with these 5 easy tips.

June 23, 2022
November 7, 2023

Inclusive Workplace: 5 Easy Tips for Welcoming Diversity

Creating an inclusive workplace is essential for businesses in today's society. With a war for talent and an ever more diverse workforce, it is important to make everyone feel comfortable and welcome. In addition, the business case for diversity becomes ever more evident in a global economy and increasing buying power.

Next to complex strategic initiatives, there are many ways to make your office a more inclusive place that is surprisingly simple. Having studied how different approaches work in different companies and their respective cultures with Mentessa for the past three years, we have collected a list of tips that any organization can use to foster a more welcoming and productive work environment for all employees!

Inclusive Workplace: 5 Easy Tips for Welcoming Diversity

Tip 1: Offer DEI Training

One way to make your workplace more inclusive is to provide training for all employees on diversity, equity, and inclusion (DEI). This is the first step for anyone to understand the importance of inclusion and the barriers to it in the everyday life.

Offering workforce training is historically associated with the high cost and high effort. However, DEI training does not necessarily need to be customized to the company's mission or objectives. There are tons of great online courses publicly available online - for free, for a one-time fee, or for less than 100 USD in subscription to start with.

💡 If you want to try just one, we recommend the Inclusive Leadership by the University of Colorado. It is available on Coursera and can be audited for free.

⚠️ Trainings are just the tipping point, and their effect is not always sustainable. In fact, The Economist authors Frank Dobbin and Alexandra Kalev explain why diversity training might not even work.

Tip 2: Use inclusive language

In order to create lasting change, inclusivity needs to be adopted in the everyday interaction in the organization, starting with the language used. Forbes provides helpful tips on how to use more inclusive language at work, whether you’re speaking or writing.

Some recommendations are:

  • Use “partner” instead of “wife/husband”
  • Use gender-neutral pronouns such as “they/them”
  • Use gender-neutral Forms of Occupations

💡 If you want to get automated suggestions on improving or neutralizing written text for inclusion, you can try You can start for free - with a browser plug-in to try it out.

Tip 3: Cater for frequent interactions

When people meet often, they get to know each other better. This is the safest way to burst bubbles. In fact, a study showed that people who have more friends at work are also more likely to report feeling included at work.

So aim to create opportunities for socializing in the workplace, like team lunches or coffee breaks. You could also host after-work events where employees can mingle in a relaxed setting.

Tip 4: Launch a peer-to-peer network

A great way to build an inclusive workplace is to launch a peer-to-peer network. This can be an online platform where employees can connect with each other, exchange ideas, and collaborate on projects.

Peer-to-peer networks promote inclusion by giving everyone a voice. They also make it easy for people to find others with the same challenges and overcome those quicker together.

💡 If you want to make an easy start into a culture of inclusion and collaboration, you can try peer-to-peer networking with Mentessa. Our platform will do the admin and matching work for you.

Tip 5: Offer mentoring for diverse talent

Mentoring is a great way to support the development of diverse talent in your inclusive workplace. It can help employees from different backgrounds feel like they have someone to look up to and learn from.

If you don't have the budget for a formal mentoring program, there are still plenty of ways to encourage mentorship within your organization:

  • Host a matching lunch in the canteen or on Zoom
  • Invite managers to match new hires with a mentor for onboarding
  • Make informal mentorship already taking place visible to raise interest

Inclusion is a process.

All in all, starting your organization's journey does not need to be complicated. The best way to start it is to make the first step, try all of the above, and take it from there.

But it is also good for business. A study by McKinsey found that companies in the top quartile for racial and ethnic diversity are 35% more likely to have financial returns above their respective national industry medians. So, there's no time to waste - start building your inclusive workplace today!

To find out more about how Mentessa can foster a culture of connection and create a happier, more motivated and productive workforce:

This article was originally published here.

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