Discussions surrounding diversity and inclusion are now front and center, dominating conversations not only in boardroom but around the dinner table. And, with these conversations comes the hope that positive change can come not only to the country, put to our workplaces as well.

Leaders in the workplace can play a central role in this time of change by creating a professional environment that celebrates and embraces the differences of the people who make up the workforce. After al, encouraging and respecting those differences has been proven to be a performance booster.

But, how can leaders, working with their company’s human resources team, become more intentional when it comes to promoting diversity, inclusion has on the and a sense of belonging? One way to recognize the impact that unconscious bias has on the workforce.

According to research from Google, these subconscious judgments play a role in the decisions we make not only as individuals, but as members of the workforce, where they can find their way into the policies and procedures of our workforce.

These biases can cause people to disregard fantastic ideas, diminish individual potential and create a less-than-ideal workplace environment.

Below are some ways you can tackle biases on the job:

Own your blind spots: The first step in building an inclusive workplace is to acknowledge your own personal biases and how they impact how you relate to others. You and your team should do some personal soul searching and how that impacts hiring decisions, promotions and rewards for great work.

Talk it out: Encourage meaningful dialogues between managers and staff throughout the company. These conversations can indeed change hearts and minds while increasing empathy and understanding among your team.

Accountability: You have talked the talk, now walk the walk. Leaders should hold both themselves and their teams accountable for continually bettering the workplace environment by assessing what their teams are thinking and then acting upon those assessments.

In order to create an inclusive environment at the office, leaders must first model the change they want to see themselves by the way they speak and act to others. When your team sees this and realizes that you not only expect an inclusive attitude but demonstrate one yourself, they will develop one themselves.

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