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Can we 'level up' on inclusion?

When an organization begins the process of examining and addressing their own diversity, equity and inclusion standards, a lot of questions come up as the journey begins but one of the first and biggest is, how do we know if it’s working? The five-phases of Breakfast Culture’s D&I Audits are designed to inform and guide organizations along their DEI (diversity equity inclusion) journey using both the five levels of Trevor Wilson’s “Inclusion Continuum” (first introduced in his 1996 book DIVERSITY AT WORK) and the detailed series of benchmarks from the Centre for Global Inclusion, founded in 2017. The 0-5 score that the audit generates through our comprehensive measurement and analysis process is informed by the Centre’s Global Diversity, Equity and Inclusion Benchmarks or GDEIB and often raises a first, often anxious question: why aren’t we a three?

Most organizations with a large and diverse workforce immediately expect to rank somewhere in the middle of Wilson’s continuum but the fact is, 70 percent of organizations beginning their D&I strategy first rank between zero and three. Either they may be surprised that – in regards to race or gender or physical ability or neurodiversity – they’re not quite as diverse as they thought they were, or that there’s a lack of true inclusion in management or boards, for instance, that doesn’t warrant a level three yet.

But this is a great first step! There are an unfortunately large number of companies out there that don’t even see the need yet, living in denial and hovering above zero. As Wilson himself pointed out in 2011, there are also many progressive organizations still reaching for a four. It’s not about the score, but the work – all of us pushing forward for the betterment of one’s organizational health and that of society at large.

The Global Diversity, Equity and Inclusion Benchmarks that have been developed by more than one hundred expert DEI panellists are available free to all from their site and the actions the Centre recommends for organizations fall roughly into four steps: FOUNDATION: Drive the Strategy Develop a strong rationale for a DEI vision, mission and strategy and align it to your organizational goals, holding leaders accountable for implementing the goals, achieving results, and being role models. INTERNAL: Attract & Retain People Ensure that attraction, sourcing, and recruitment is done through the lens of DEI, reducing bias, and then integrated into talent development, performance management, advancement, and retention strategies. BRIDGING: Align and Connect Ensure that assessments, measurement, and research include a DEI lens, educating all to achieve a level of DEI competence and confidence needed to create a diverse, equitable, and inclusive organization. EXTERNAL: Listen to and Serve Society Embed DEI in services and products development to serve diverse customers and clients, while being proactive in creating inclusion with your partners, community and society at large. These are steps that any organization can begin to take right this moment, either by themselves or with the measured, active support of a Breakfast Culture D&I Audit, using our detailed Employee Engagement Surveys and partnership with Prompta AI® to accurately measure inclusion in organizations. It is, frankly, “better people listening” and creates meaningful DEI results alone or in conjunction with Breakfast Culture’s additional services including: Group Training & Individual Coaching, Inspirational Talks & Motivational Keynotes, Woke Marketing & Communications, and/or #SafeSpace Discussion Facilitation. Happy to jump on a call to discuss how Breakfast Culture can help with your organizational diversity and inclusion journey. Schedule a 30-minute meeting today: Let's Break Some Eggs! – Jefferson Darrell, Founder and CEO, Breakfast Culture™Inc.

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