Creating a Diversity Program for the Small Business

Small businesses are taking cues from larger corporations lately and developing diversity programs to complement their hiring goals. By recognizing the effectiveness of such programs, the small business can take advantage of the team strengthening and higher production that inevitably follows a successful diversity program.

But where to get started? There are several factors to consider when customizing a program that fits your business (key word here is customize). We break them down for you:

1. Research! Watch webinars, attend seminars, read testimonials of teams that have implemented successful diversity programs. Learning what has worked, and especially what hasn’t, can better prepare you for making smart choices in your own strategizing.

2. About that word customize. While it’s important to do the before-mentioned research, it’s equally important to make sure you keep your own company goals and culture in mind when developing strategy. What do you want a diversity program to do for your team? How will you support the program in a way that makes sense for your company? What challenges do you envision will arise and how will you meet them? These questions, and the others that will spring up, are important to consider through the lens of your specific company culture.

3. Select like-minded team members to your strategizing meeting. Involve those employees who will be a) instrumental in implementing the program, and b) enthusiastic for seeing it through. It’s important to highlight the achievements of the program and appointing a few cheerleaders can be make that happen.

4. While customizing your strategy, think less is more. An effective plan is one that is easily understood and therefore implemented.

5. Make your diversity program…diverse. Include a variety of different resources to support the program: speakers, team-building games/projects, brainstorming sessions, and conferences are all great examples of maintaining the program.

6. Adjust…but stay consistent. Pay attention and make changes when necessary, otherwise remind consistent. Everyone being on the same page is vital to success.

7. Hire a consultant! If you recognize the benefits of a diversity program but are overwhelmed with strategizing the perfect fit for your company, hire an HR consultant! Eos Human Resources Consulting can work with you on a policy that will make the most sense for your business, effectively alleviating the stress of implementation while steering your team in the right direction.

Contact us to learn more on how we can assist you in achieving your team productivity goals!