Many studies show that a diverse and inclusive organization culture promotes better employee engagement, job satisfaction, innovation even better business performance. Yet, many organizations and leaders still struggle with acheiving the goals of their DEI programs. The biggest inhibitors to acheiving diversity and inclusion are implicit biases. Whether they be gender affinity, confirmation, conformity or any other form, they are biases which impact our perceptions of reality, our decision making, and our behaviors.
Implicit bias can be informal (organization norms and behaviors) but they can also be experienced as a stated policy or rule. Despite rigors training programs for their leaders and employees, implicit bias (sometimes called “unconcious bias”) still persist in most organizations. Furthermore, many DEI initiatives focus on the recruitment process, but in fact, we need to put effort into all phases of employees experience, the day-to-day work environment, promotion and advancement, pay equity and teamwork and collaboration. Rooting out implicit biases in all these areas of the business will take time and effort on the part of leadership. Your leadership!
As a leader, overcoming implicit bias in your organization starts with you becoming more self-aware. steppng into vulnerability and becoming more emotionally intelligent as a leader. You may be the one introducing and perpetuating the biases into the organization and team setting. Self-awareness and vulnerability allow you to recognize and be open to how your own values, beliefs and behavioral tendencies are seen by others. Improved EQ will help to listen and connect with others more effectively, and you’ll develop greater empathy and compassion for how others are experiencing you, the team and the organization.
If you’re a leader, and you want to better understand your implicit biases or improve your ability to recognize it in others, you could benefit from an executive coach. Talk to an expert, schedule some time with me today.
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