- More than 150 leading CEOs from around the world have pledged their commitment to diversity and inclusion by signing on to the CEO Action for Diversity & Inclusion agreement. The move is being called the "largest ever" CEO-driven commitment to diversity in the workplace.
- The CEOs are vowing to develop workplaces in which different experiences and perspectives are encouraged and respected, and employees may feel free to discuss diversity issues. The CEO pact also aims to share both successful and unsuccessful actions around diversity through a central hub called CEOAction.com.
- In a 2016 report, university researchers concluded that the workplace hasn't fully recognized the benefits of diversity and inclusion. A report from the nonprofit think tank, the Center for Talent Innovation, confirms this conclusion. It found that 70% of workers are uncomfortable about discussing race relations, but that employees feel included and their ideas recognized when they feel they can talk openly about it.
This CEO pact couldn't come at a more necessary time. CEOs, by a show of their commitment to diversity and inclusion, can lead the way towards better understanding of differences along the lines of race, ethnicity, gender, religion and lifestyles. Top level buy-in is key to making diversity programs work.
By signing a worldwide agreement, company heads have a duty to be accountable and ensure that managers, supervisors and rank-and-file staff are onboard with diversity and inclusion initiatives. But for diversity programs to truly take off, space has to be made for voices of all kinds. Some companies have opted for employee resource groups to provide that space.
Allowing for feedback from a slew of sources, including external ones, can ensure the company culture is evolving in a way that employers want.