First, and perhaps most crucially: Is diversity still relevant? The answer is a resounding yes. Diversity brings different people, perspectives, ideas, and experiences to the table, fostering innovation, creativity and a competitive edge. It's not just about meeting quotas; it's about building a better business.
Secondly, how do we continue the dialogue? It can be counterproductive to change Chief Diversity Officer job titles or eliminate these positions altogether. Instead, companies must commit to fostering a culture of inclusion and belonging. It means engaging in ongoing conversations, actively listening to employees' experiences, and being committed to the work by updating their policies, practices, and procedures to be more inclusive from the front lines up through the C-suite. That can be scary because there are always concerns about “What if we don’t do this the right way?”
Finally, the third question corporations need to ask themselves is: How do we see real change within our culture? Simply paying lip service to diversity initiatives won't cut it. Companies must invest in comprehensive training, equitable hiring practices, and leadership accountability as core strategies to their business success.
Organizations that are serious about changing behaviors that will result in a more inclusive workplace will not only consider the talent pools from which they are fishing for NEW talent but will also be intentional about developing a pipeline from which they promote PROVEN talent to GET them in the seats and provide the support to KEEP them there: mentoring, coaching, and ongoing career development aligned with corporate succession planning.