Globalization, the diversity of society and companies that give their employees the chance to work in a different location for a while are why inclusive leadership in teams is becoming more and more important. Cultural diversity in our working world brings many advantages but also some challenges. Collaboration, curiosity and cultural intelligence are key skills to ensure smooth collaboration in a multicultural team. I would like to show you three tips that should be followed in order to promote inclusive leadership in your company.
1. Promote authenticity
Many job descriptions say you should "come as you are". However, such messages shouldn't just be about wearing a crazy outfit or having coloured hair in the office. Instead, we should have the chance to address our unique needs and experiences openly. In inclusive leadership, you must align your working self and the person you think you are in private and reduce the differences. Unfortunately, in many workplaces, fitting is still a survival tactic. Accept that you have fewer opportunities to grow? Unfortunately, it is precisely this pressure to adapt that is strongest among people from marginalized groups. It leads to chronic stress.
2. Build confidence and curiosity
Unfortunately, it is often not enough to create space for discussion about prejudice, inclusion and racism. Everyone, including leaders, must work on their self-perception and assessment process. All people are biased in their subconscious, like it or not. It is essential to build self-esteem and curiosity to combat this bias. Be curious; let yourself be inspired by other people and their cultures. There is so much more to discover than our little bubble.
3. Consistently keep other perspectives high
Let everyone have their say and respect other opinions and perspectives. Also, or especially in small talk, we have to pay attention to equality in our communication. We tend to make small talk with those we are most comfortable with and, unfortunately, often steer clear of those we are not yet familiar with. Members who have been in the team for a long time or extroverted people get better performance. Pay attention to the dynamics and listen.
How do you deal with cultural diversity in your company?