First published on LinkedIn.
We've heard the business case for Diversity, Equity & Inclusion (DEI), but what about 'Allyship' specifically? Allyship isn't just a basis for driving DEI forward, it can also act as a catalyst in people's careers. When there are Allies in your organization, people are more likely to feel they BELONG in the organization, be happy with their workplace CULTURE, and have job SATISFACTION.
So where are your Allies?
In a recent Change Catalyst report on the State of Allyship, 12% of companies reported having no Allies while 20-45% reported having 1 to 3 Allies in the workplace. What do these numbers mean and why are they relevant?
Well, firstly, we aren't even at the halfway point when it comes to having a single Ally in the workplace; and secondly, Allies need support! Leaders need to support corporate Allies the same way they support and speak up for BIPOC employees! When it comes to driving DEIB forward, many of my clients cite "lack of training" as a primary reason for feeling unequipped/scared/unsure to show up as an Ally. Fear of retaliation, alienation or cancelation are also concerns of many.
If your team already has a goal or next step in mind, training helps reinforce learnings, increase awareness and provide skills/knowledge/confidence that your Allies need in order to handle potential workplace scenarios.
Furthermore, by supporting training in your organization, you are intentionally setting time aside to prioritize DEIB. A recent report found that 41% of managers are “too busy” to implement Diversity initiatives. Meanwhile, 57% of employees think their companies should be more diverse.
The Allies have spoken and it's time to take action! Be cognizant of the needs and demands of your workforce. Thinking ahead, how will these decisions shape your future talent? It starts with small steps but they lead to big changes. As one of my business coaches told me years ago, "SMALL hinges open BIG doors." Not every employee will feel and see the effects immediately, but know that since it is a journey, the sense of Inclusion & Belonging can happen at any time.
As they always say, "You find Allies in the most unexpected places."
Until next month... Stay safe, be well & stay healthy!