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yogita patil
Hi All, I need help on diversity policy! DO let me know as i have to make a diversity policy for my organization. How do i go about making the same?? Regards, Yogita 9945526933
From India, Madras
Yogita Patil
Sr.exe - Hr


HIi Yogita,

Today the attrition rate of every corporate sectors is high due to lack of proper diversity program/policy. it is more challengable since we are in global village.

Before you look to hire diverse candidates, make sure your organizational culture and environment will support diversity, otherwise retention is sure to become a challenge.

Following are 10 ways to ensure that your diversity program is successful

1. Make it strategic

Incorporate diversity into your business strategy and communicate the professional “business sense” and leadership commitment to diversity; make training only a part of the overall diversity program; revisit existing policies and programs to ensure they align with and support your vision for diversity.

2. Make it measurable: Know your baseline

How do your current employees feel about your environment - Is it inclusive? Do they feel they are part of the company team? Do they feel their input is welcome? Periodic climate surveys and ongoing exit interview surveys can provide you with valuable information with which to measure your program's effectiveness.

3. Make it relevant to your customers/clients

Who are your current customers/clients? Who might your new customers/clients be and what are their interests? How might you position your organization to meet the needs of an increasingly diverse market?

4. Make it inclusive

Make your program applicable to all employees of the organization, rather than targeting people of color, women and/or disabled employees.

5. Make sure there's accountability

Assign responsibility to a core team of leadership professionals for the development and implementation of strategic action plans.

6. Make it experiential

Roll out development programs that enable participants to draw from real world examples and engage in interactive exercises so that they can “try-on” new concepts and build new skills.

7. Make it unifying

Rather than polarizing or alienating, which many diversity programs tend to be as they recreate social inequities

8. Make it standard

Role model an appreciation of differences from the top down; the message must stem from leadership and business vision, and be modeled by senior executives.

9. Make it collaborative

Encourage accountability and ownership of the responsibility for fostering an inclusive environment by all managers and staff throughout the organization.

10. Make it comprehensive

Cover the basics, like rolling out compliance training and developing anti-harassment and anti-bias policies, but be sure to assign critical importance to the development of intercultural competence and the associated skills.



From India
Hi! You may also want to refer to the attached BSR resource for a Diversity policy


Anubhuti <link updated to site home>

Leadership Examples

These "leadership" practices have been chosen as illustrative examples. They are intended to represent innovation, higher than average commitment, unusual industry practice or a comprehensive approach to this issue. Periodically, the examples listed may be changed. For additional leadership examples in the area of Workplace, see Overview of Workplace.


In 1999, cosmetics company Avon was suffering from waning sales and a weak public image. Five years later, Avon was delivering significant growth in sales, profits and earnings per share, thanks in large part to a strategy that relied on global sales and products targeted to diverse customers. Andrea Jung, the company's CEO, who is Chinese American, took the helm in 1999 and led an effort to diversify product offerings, global sales, and public image. New products targeted to older women, and ad campaigns featuring African American and Mexican celebrities, helped to expand the company's target market. At the same time, the company focused on enhancing international brand recognition and establishing direct-sales forces in Latin America and Asia. The company also recognizes the importance of diversity in the workplace. As stated on Avon's website, the company has "more women in management positions (more than 86%) than any other Fortune 500 company� [and] half the members of our Board of Directors are female." The company has established workplace networks to encourage diversity internally and externally. According to the Avon website: "In the United States and elsewhere, Avon has internal networks of associates including a Parents' Network, a Hispanic Network, a Black Professional Association, an Asian network and a Gay and Lesbian network. The networks act as liaisons between associates and management to bring voice to critical issues that impact the workplace and the marketplace." Avon's diversity efforts have not only resulted in financial success, the company has also achieved significant name recognition: Avon has won numerous awards for its brands and customer satisfaction in Japan, the Philippines, Indonesia, India, Malaysia, China, Taiwan, Thailand and Brazil, as well as in European countries and the United States. The company has received extensive recognition for diversity in Asia, Latin America and Europe, and in the U.S., Fortune ranked Avon 28th in the 50 Best Companies for Minorities.


Restaurant chain Denny's has known the benefits of an effective diversity policy and the costs of a bad one. In 1994, Denny's was involved in significant, high-profile lawsuits for discriminatory treatment towards African American customers. Settling the lawsuits cost the company $54 million, and the company's name became synonymous with racial discrimination, reflecting poorly in the eyes of potential customers. Rather than fold, the company embarked on a massive turnaround, putting diversity and racial equality at the core of their corporate culture. Diversity became integral to all employees, from individual restaurant staff up to the Board of Directors, and was woven into all aspects of business operations, including training, supplier relationships and store ownership. As of 2004, nearly half of the company's franchises were owned by minorities. Half of its executives are women and/or people of color, a third of its managers are African-American, Hispanic or Asian-Pacific Americans. The turnaround in Denny's reputation has been significant. In 2004, Denny's was ranked fifth in Fortune's 50 Best Companies for Minorities, 37th in DiversityInc's Top Companies for Diversity, and tenth in DiversityInc's Top 10 Companies for Supplier Diversity. Financial success has followed as well, with Denny's significantly outperforming the S&P 500 index in 2004.

Lloyds TSB

One of the U.K.'s largest banks, Lloyds TSB’s diversity programs go "beyond compliance" to ensure they are effectively meeting the needs of their employees and customers. Recognizing that they operate in diverse environments, Lloyds has made significant effort and investment in ensuring that its banking locations reflect the demographics of its customers. The business benefit was significant: Lloyds "saw a 30% increase in sales in the branches where the staffing was changed to reflect the ethnicity of customers," according to Real World magazine. Lloyds has received special recognition for its disability programs, which have resulted in better retention of disabled employees, more accessible buildings, and increased business from disabled customers. The program's objective was to eliminate any discrimination faced by disabled employees or customers. Lloyds established five key themes: recruiting, retaining and developing disabled employees; understanding and meeting the needs of disabled customers; building accessibility into the business; ensuring top level buy-in from senior executives; and developing and encouraging best practices internally and externally. Forty group managing directors were made accountable for implementing the disability strategy, and the company relied heavily on its corporate university to train line managers in diversity and the needs of disabled customers and employees.

Safeco Insurance

Safeco's commitment to diversity began with CEO Mike McGavick's conviction that "only companies that seek with urgency to understand their role in [a] more diverse society will have a real chance for success in coming decades." In 2001, the company launched a wide-scale effort to develop a diversity strategy for Safeco; an employee group composed of people from all levels of the company analyzed diversity from multiple perspectives: employees, vendors, customers and the community. A property and casualty insurance company, Safeco relies on a network of independent agents to sell auto, home and small business insurance in increasingly diverse communities. Safeco recognizes that diversity is critical to its business success and has responded with programs to increase representation of women and people of color at all levels of the company, to increase its business with women- and minority-owned vendors, and to ensure its community outreach and corporate philanthropy reach diverse populations. Safeco's diversity efforts included making “Valuing Diversity” a core competency for all employees; creating an "Inclusion Index" from its employee opinion survey to foster a high performing work environment and developing an intranet based "Diversity Performance Report" to establish strategic accountability and metrics for company-wide diversity efforts. In 2004, Safeco was ranked 36th in DiversityInc's Top Companies for Diversity, and in the two years after it implemented its diversity strategy in 2002, Safeco has generally outperformed both the S&P 500 Index and the Dow Jones Industrial Average.

Sample Policies

The following sample policies are quoted directly from company materials. They are intended to represent innovation, higher than average commitment, unusual industry practice or a comprehensive approach to this issue. Periodically, the examples listed may be changed. For additional Sample Policies in the area of Workplace, see Overview of Workplace.


"Business activities such as hiring, training, compensation, promotions, transfers, terminations and IBM-sponsored social and recreational activities are conducted without discrimination based on race, color, religion, gender, gender identity or expression, sexual orientation, national origin, disability, age or status as a special disabled veteran or other veteran covered by the Vietnam Era Veterans Readjustment Act of 1974, as amended.

"These business activities and the design and administration of IBM benefit plans comply with all applicable federal, state and local laws, including those dealing with equal opportunity. IBM also makes accommodation for religious observances, which IBM determines reasonable.

"In respecting and valuing the diversity among our employees and all those with whom we do business, managers are expected to ensure that there is a work environment free of all forms of discrimination and harassment.

"To provide equal opportunity and affirmative action for applicants and employees, IBM carries out programs on behalf of women, minorities, people with disabilities, special disabled veterans and other veterans covered by the Vietnam Era Veterans Readjustment Act of 1974, as amended. This includes outreach as well as human resource programs that ensure equity in compensation and opportunity for growth and development.

"Effective management of our workforce diversity policy is an important strategic objective. Every IBM manager is expected to abide by this policy and uphold the company's commitment to workforce diversity."

Royal Dutch/Shell Group

"Our vision 'A recognised leader in Diversity and Inclusiveness'... In Shell, Diversity means all the ways we differ. It includes visible differences such as age, gender, ethnicity and physical appearance; as well as underlying differences such as thought styles, religion, nationality and sexual orientation.

"Inclusiveness means a workplace where differences are valued; where everyone has the opportunity to develop skills and talents consistent with our values and business objectives. The aim is to create an organisation where people feel involved, respected, connected -- where the richness of ideas, backgrounds and perspectives are harnessed to create business value."

Siemens AG

"Diversity means variety. In the workplace, the term is used to denote the variety among employees -- those differences of age, gender, ethnicity, religion and nationality that make each one of us a unique and distinctive individual. In a global company like Siemens, we experience diversity during our everyday work. Diversified teams are commonplace. We regard the diversity of our workforce as an invaluable source of creativity and experience that makes us more competitive."

Author: BSR Staff

From India, New Delhi
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