Inclusivity and "inclusive language" have become buzzwords in business, but what does this mean in practice? And why should you incorporate it into your business?
This can be in something other than English, too. Inclusivity is just as important if you work with employees, customers, and suppliers who speak different languages.
In this blog post, we'll explore the benefits of using more inclusive language and highlight simple changes that can make a significant difference.
Inclusivity Impacts Well Being
Inclusive language can mean a lot of things to different people. It has a crucial impact on well-being and a feeling of belonging in your workplace. This sense of belonging is the key to improving your inclusivity, as it directly impacts your organization's success and performance.
According to Deloitte's recent Human Capital Trends research, 79% of organizations say belonging in the workplace is essential to their success. However, only 17% of organizations have processes to improve this element.
A crucial part of belonging is inclusivity and diversity, which significantly impact your workforce. Employees are more likely to stay, more likely to work to their best and ultimately improve your organizational success.
Diversity = Loyalty
According to a 2022 Deloitte Millennial Survey, a "very strong correlation exists between perceptions of workforce diversity and loyalty". This shows the importance of diversity in your organization and your outward appearance of being diverse. This is where inclusive language comes into play. Inclusive language within your organization and your marketing materials directly impact the perception of your organization's diversity.
Inclusive language goes beyond just being inclusive for your existing or long-term employees. Inclusivity also means ensuring your recruitment materials are diverse and welcoming to all applicants.
Also, focusing on those new recruits is where you will get your latest perspectives on your work and have the most significant breakthroughs. It is easy to forget about the new people who still need to memorize all the acronyms. This creates a considerable gap in confidence because they may worry about getting the acronyms wrong or sounding silly when asking a question.
Steps Your Business Can Take
In terms of what businesses can do, here are some initial steps that can go a long way:
- Ensure your recruitment posts and copy are as neutral and accepting of all applicants as possible. It's easy for unconscious bias to come into play here. Use an online service to check your language for gendered or otherwise biased language that might discourage certain applicants. This can even help you get more applicants, as Zip Recruiter found that job listings with gender-neutral wording get 42% more responses.
- Translate these posts into multiple languages to attract the widest audience possible. You should certainly translate and localize your posts and materials for the regions in which you are seeking applicants.
- Limit your acronyms to the bare minimum or make an easy-to-understand guide. This will help new employees learn the ropes faster and feel confident speaking their ideas. As the mental health charity Mind argues, using acronyms sparingly can also ensure that content and discussion are as accessible as possible.
- Ensure that all staff actively use inclusive language. This must be incorporated by senior staff and managers first, which will trickle down the organization.
- Have a language access partner ready to assist in interpreting conversations into multiple languages so that all employees and applicants can communicate equally.
- Translate and localize all materials intake materials into multiple languages.
- Consult one of the many inclusive language guides when writing anything for your organization. This can have beneficial information on how to improve and common words and phrases that shouldn't be used in the workplace.
LanguageLine Can Help
Ultimately, inclusive language is proven to help employees feel a sense of belonging, be more confident and work to the best of their ability. This can be in something other than English, too. Inclusivity is just as important if you work with customers and suppliers who speak different languages.
If you'd like to learn more about our services or talk to us about your language services requirements, we are here and always happy to help. Please visit our website and schedule a conversation so we can discuss the opportunities that lie within your organization.