On July 22, 2020, Circa, formerly known as LocalJobNetwork, held a Diversity Symposium Virtual Event that focused on announcing the new name and brand. At Circa we believe that diverse teams have the power to transform business, and to kick-start the transformation, our Diversity Symposium included an expert Diversity Panel. The panel consisted of Stephany Rose Ph.D., Associate Professor, Women’s and Ethnic Studies at UCCS, Torin Ellis, Diversity Strategist, Host of Career Mix on SiriusXM, Published Author of Rip the Resume, and Roselle Rogers, Vice President, Diversity Equity and Inclusion at Circa.
The Diversity Panel led an important discussion on what employees should expect from corporate America, the importance of DEI and tips on what companies should be doing or start doing. Takeaways from the discussion were very impactful, and we have rounded up some of the most noteworthy items, below.
Top 10 Takeaways from the Diversity Symposium:
- If you have no Diversity, Equity and Inclusion (DEI) plan in your company you need to start enacting change, or your company will be left behind. No matter the organization size, a shift to DEI is a shift to focus on how you care about employees as well as innovation, culture and building trust within a company.
- Employees should be looking for declarative statements from companies with a focus on their DEI work. Companies should not only be making statements but backing it up by actions and looking at reallocation of resources to enact change now to back those statements.
- A great place to start with DEI is listening sessions which can be very impactful for leadership. Listening to the people you have already invested in and are already inside your company can provide you with ideas on where to start with DEI.
- When talking about DEI, you need to make sure that there is a focus on Inclusion. Inclusion changes should go beyond the people being brought in, to also focus on how your company does business and stands by policies.
- We attempt to give everyone the same accommodation because it is politically correct when thinking about equity. However, what companies need to focus on is removing barriers that are not allowing for employees to fully participate. If you haven’t already, check out Circa’s complimentary on-demand webinar focused on Reasonable Accommodation and Beyond in the Workplace.
- Recruiting more diverse candidates can be difficult, but there are many resources are out there to help, including local veteran representatives, job centers and community partners. Make sure when looking to attract diverse candidates, to pay attention to comparable experiences and ensure the requirements listed are truly necessary. Don’t forget to use disposition codes as well to document when rejecting a candidate it is justifiable, objective, defensible and job-related to remove biases.
- Everyone has biases. The best way to address them is to recognize them, train on them, and educate people on what to do with biases. Accepting that we have them and putting a plan in place on what to do when they show up can help a lot. A great tool to use when evaluating your implicit biases is Project Implicit from Harvard.
- The focus is where it should be right now on black, brown and disabled people who have been marginalized and shut out of opportunities. Make sure your company is doing something different and moving towards more DEI initiatives to ensure no one is being left out on opportunities.
- When measuring diversity goals, you can measure any way that you like, whether it is your pipeline, investment into the community, expansion of products, hiring or increasing business. The focus should be on making progress. Baseline two or three items, and in 12 to 18 months see where you are and continue to measure or measure other items.
- The work of DEI belongs to all of us. It is not one department or individual — it should be the value and mission for all employees and the company.
Watch the Diversity Symposium Virtual Event On-Demand today to see what other takeaways and ideas you can come away with to start or enhance your DEI initiatives.