Diversity and Inclusion: Creating Lasting Change in Energy
Diversity and inclusion is a common hiring goal across all industries; within energy, it is an absolute imperative. The inclusion of multiple perspectives results in a wider array of problem-solving avenues. Some may see diversification as a challenge but there are five easy and cost-effective ways to simplify your efforts.
Changing the overall makeup of the energy industry’s workforce is not something that will happen overnight. Diversity and inclusion, consistent with any substantial cultural change, will take time and must be planned for. Creating and implementing initiatives, along with initial training and hiring, must be budgeted over a 12 month period, at the very least.
In any industry, there are relics from the past that can rear their heads. It is important when communicating with a diverse talent pool that previous insensitive policies be addressed head-on, that tough questions be asked, and that a company’s leadership be open to acknowledging the past. Decision makers must become comfortable with accountability, being vulnerable and creating company cultures where hard issues can be discussed openly.
Historically, diversity and inclusion candidates have made up only a small percentage of management positions and, when we look at the executive level, that number shrinks even more. The solution for this disparity goes beyond hiring more D&I candidates. Making hiring processes and onboarding more transparent will inform potential talent and leadership on exactly what it takes to elevate themselves. Clearer roads to decision making positions will increase diversity and inclusion organically.
Be Less Formal
There tends to be resistance to any policy that is abrupt and required. By building out these diversity and inclusion programs as internal efforts towards professional development, the actions can seem more proactive and less blunt. Professional development evokes an atmosphere that is less regulated and more conversational, potentially allowing your workforce to develop these initiatives free of heavy-handed micromanagement.
Be Comfortable with Imperfection
Individuals and organizations are not perfect. It is important that we acknowledge the flaws of the past but remain fully planted in the present—moving towards a future where those issues are remedied. You’re a leader, a decision-maker and a communicator. Use your capital to not only influence, but to identify.
At J MAR & Associates, we know diversity and inclusion is a long and potentially intensive process. We offer the diverse hires, the experience and the perspective to help your company make real and lasting change. Contact us today to get started.