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Exhibiting Inclusive Behaviour at The Workplace

6 Jun 2022

Most leaders agree an inclusive workplace is important - they are being mindful about their hiring decisions and advocating the need for inclusive language, beating unconscious bias, and encouraging the need for authentic viewpoints despite some being viewed unpopular.

So, what can we do, to create a culture that celebrates unique perspectives, experiences, and ideas?

  1. Create a safe space and listen to people without letting your pre-conceived notions take over – Open your mind to possibilities unknown or inconceivable to you.

  2. Stay curious and normalise changing your opinion about something when new information is made available to you – Explore learning and development opportunities in your organisation or attend workshops that can broaden your ideas and aspirations.

  3. Examine your assumptions and conditioning – When we make assumptions, we do not allow for open and honest communication which could result in conflicts, lack of trust and bad business decisions.

  4. Use inclusive language – Unknowingly, we carry our own biases with us every day. For instance, we may assume a doctor or driver is a man and a nurse or teacher is a woman. Hence, in being mindful and making a few changes like the ones mentioned below, we could make this shift to using inclusive language seamless.

    1. Refer to a theoretical person as 'they' instead of 'he' or 'she'.

    2. Use neutral words related to gender - For example, saying "you all" rather than "you guys," or "spouse or partner" rather than "husband” or “wife”.

    3. Enable proof reading options on your word editing tools – When you type “Landlord”, you will be alerted about gender-neutral replacement options like “Property Owner” or “Proprietor”. In Microsoft Word, you can do so by: Clicking on File > Options > Proofing >Look for Grammar and Refinements > Settings >Check all boxes under Inclusiveness.

This is in no way exhaustive, but these are baby steps to making one’s workplace more inclusive.

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