Oh, baby, baby it’s a diverse world
From time to time, I like to remind myself about diversity. It’s a diverse topic for sure but every now and then it tends to be reduced to features such as gender, skin color or physical ability. And sometimes these features are inspected in isolation from each other.
The different dimensions of diversity drill into themes such as:
- what we believe & how we think
- how we learn and participate
- socio-economic background
- physical characteristics
- lived experience
Sometimes it can feel like too much to take in but eventually it’s more about becoming aware of existing things and structures in our every day life – including your family, friends, colleagues and end-users.
Diversity alone is breaking my heart in two
Diversity is about the differences and features that people have. Everyone has their own set and it affects individuals in different ways. This is why an organisation that’s diverse has not really achieved that much without taking things like inclusion and equity into account. A highly diverse team can also be highly dysfunctional and have a toxic culture.
It’s hard to get by just upon a smile
Moreover, a well functioning team that’s diverse can identify a broader set of potential customer and take their intersecting features into account. Needless to say, accessibility, usability, and inclusion are all key ingredients in creating an environment that matches with the people living in it. Furthermore, we want to create spaces with equal playing fields and fair rules. Whether they be digital, physical or cultural.
This is where we need a variety of people that are both welcomed to step in and also have courage to speak up. Achieving that is no small feat but it’s a process that is crucial for safety and success.
P.S. If you’d like to drill in a bit deeper to these topics, check out eg. Inklusiiv’s resource bank