Inclusion & Business
Society and the labour market are constantly changing. The concept of sustainability is becoming increasingly important (environment, economy and social affairs). What is certain is that companies today have to react very flexibly to changing circumstances, trends and social change in order to remain competitive. It takes an innovative corporate culture to transform into a sustainable enterprise.
In the 17 SDGs (Sustainable Development Goals of the United Nations), diversity and inclusion are clearly named as goal number 10 and should contribute to reducing economic as well as social inequalities. Therefore, every company needs a social purpose that everyone supports, which can, in turn, increase positive impact.
Inclusion means having a social framework that is accessible to all people in which they are given the same opportunities and rights regardless of gender, origin, religion, skin colour and physical characteristics. Diversity means understanding that every single person is unique. On the other hand, it is this uniqueness of every human being what we all have in common and what unites us. It means being different together.
Currently, around 15 percent of the world's population has a disability. This number will increase, particularly in Europe, due to demographic change and the aging of society. However, it is certainly a positive development to see that more and more companies are recognizing the (economic) potential of including people with disabilities, e.g. through an expanded talent pool and recognizing the advantage of diverse teams or attracting new customers.
What is an inclusive corporate culture and how to get there?
In its most fundamental sense, an inclusive corporate culture means giving people equal opportunities to perform at their best, regardless of gender, origin, religion, skin colour or disability. This requires an open-minded attitude at all levels and hierarchy, open and transparent recruitment processes, a holistic disability and inclusion strategy, accessible buildings, digital accessibility, the possibility of flexible adjustment of working conditions, a proactive talent management and a constructive error culture. The aim is to raise awareness of the issues of diversity and inclusion extending throughout the company.
Besides moral reasons for promoting an inclusive and diverse corporate culture, there are also practical and economic reasons why a company should address diversity and inclusion.