7 Questions to Determine if a Company Genuinely Values Diversity, Equity and Inclusion - Live Assets

7 Questions to Determine if a Company Genuinely Values DEI

July 17, 2022 -

Do all companies genuinely value diversity?

 

If you were to ask any organization if they value diversity, they’d most likely say yes. But are companies actually making an effort to encourage and implement a culture that values diversity, equity, and inclusion (DEI)?

 

A company changing its logo rainbow during Pride month doesn’t mean they celebrate diversity internally. During your next interview, consider asking one or a few questions to gauge if the organization can walk the walk or if they’re just talking the talk.

 

 

7 Questions to determine if a company cares about Diversity, Equity and Inclusion

 

  1. How diverse is the executive team?
  2. Who holds my supervisor accountable for diversity and inclusion matters?
  3. How is the company’s recruiting efforts supporting a diverse culture?
  4. What areas do you think the company needs to improve most?
  5. Does the company have any diversity programs in place?
  6. Does the company have a current diversity and inclusion policy?
  7. How do you celebrate and encourage diversity of ideas?

 

  1. How diverse is the executive team?

It all starts at the top. If a company wants to see change, it should begin with its executive teams. The executive team set the tone for the rest of the organization. A visual representation is the first step to seeing if a company genuinely values diversity and inclusion. If the executive team is more homogenous, ask follow-up questions to see what else the company is implementing to foster a culture that values inclusion.

 

  1. Who holds my supervisor accountable for diversity and inclusion matters?

Diversity training isn’t just a one-time thing. In fact, the training never ends. Unlearning certain beliefs and recognizing unconscious bias takes time. No one is perfect, so all staff members, including supervisors and other senior staff, need to be held accountable. If your supervisor isn’t held accountable, why should anyone else be?

 

  1. How is the company’s recruiting efforts supporting a diverse culture? Is the hiring process inclusive? 

In other words, what steps are being taken to attract a diverse pool of candidates. If you want a diverse team, you need a hiring process that supports it. Hiring bias comes in many forms and often goes undetected, meaning that the person with it doesn’t even realize they are biased. Various hiring biases, including but not limited to gender, race, religion, and age, impede an organization’s diversity efforts. Some solutions to this problem include using a cross-functional hiring team, defining diversity and setting goals, and writing job descriptions with inclusive language.

 

  1. What areas do you think the company needs to improve most? 

There isn’t necessarily a correct answer to this question, but there is definitely a wrong one. What you don’t want to hear is nothing. Ideally, your interviewer can pinpoint a specific area and provide a few details from their action plan. There’s always room for improvement. Hearing that the company has identified areas of weakness demonstrates that they are actively working to strengthen their efforts. Additionally, if the company is doing the work, there’s a higher chance your interviewer will be much more honest with you.

 

  1. Does the company have any other diversity programs in place?

It’s most ideal if a company already has diversity and inclusion programs but don’t be discouraged if your interviewer responds with a “no.” If a company does have pre-existing programs it should be found in their employee value proposition already but it doesn’t hurt to ask in case its going unpromoted.

If your interviewer gives a negative response, follow it up by asking about any future plans for DEI programs. Hopefully, the company already has an action plan in place.This could also be an opportunity to make suggestions. If the interviewer is responsive to this, then there is a chance the rest of the company is also receptive to new and fresh ideas.

 

  1. Does the company have a current diversity and inclusion policy?

A survey commissioned by Express Employment Professionals found that only 1 in 3 or 35% of employers have a diversity, equity and inclusion policy. For businesses striving to improve their diversity efforts, a policy can strengthen them and hold all staff accountable. A policy sets expectations and can make identifying those who fail to uphold those values and standards easier.

 

  1. How do you celebrate and encourage diversity of ideas? 

This question is essential for understanding the values of those in the leadership team. Just because a company’s staff looks diverse, are all team members’ ideas valued? Getting a range of various perspectives is key to success. If your interviewer struggles to respond, then steps towards DEI are probably not being taken.

 

 

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