Media Release - 5th July 2017

 

Are organisations real about diversity and inclusion?

An exciting new study is being launched in organisational culture, diversity perception and culture inclusiveness through Sydney University. The study aims to explore the degree to which diversity and inclusion initiatives are embedded within the culture of Australian based organisations.

To determine the level of culture embeddedness of diversity and inclusion, a theoretical model of organisational culture will be utilised in conjunction with thoroughly tested diversity perception and inclusiveness scales that will measure where organisations are situated on the diversity and inclusion spectrum.

One end of the spectrum reflects organisations that have not embedded diversity and inclusion within their organisational culture, whereas the other end of the spectrum reflects complete embeddedness. It is envisaged that organisations that are positioned on this latter side of the spectrum will demonstrate norms and assumptions that reflect actions of diversity and inclusiveness in the workplace on a daily basis, possibly due to the efforts of continuous positive reinforcement by senior leaders within their organisations.

Given the fact there is very little research of this kind in Australia and also the broader global community, more empirically tested data is needed to inform Australian business leaders about how their approach in diversity and inclusion management might be working from an organisational culture perspective. Business leaders need to know how they are tracking in this respect and this research will help to give organisations a reference point.

Organisations might assess from this research that their initiatives in diversity and inclusion are not doing all that much to catalyse real change. Initiatives are one thing, embedding them into the culture of an organisation is an entirely different matter that requires deep insight, skills and a thorough understanding of change management practices.

As such, there seems to be a lot of talk about diversity and inclusion, but at this stage, we are unsure as to how embedded these policies and initiatives really are within our workplaces and this research will help us answer some very important questions that we hope will lead to further open dialogue with business leaders. For some organisations, implementing the necessary changes via a proven and tested model is not always used effectively and very commonly, organsiations end up ticking boxes instead of actually embedding the initiatives within their organisational culture, which might do some good from a corporate image perspective, but not much good if you are actually aspiring for real chance.

Transparency via open communication on matters relating to diversity and inclusion is a fundamental step in the right direction, particularly for organisations that are ready to engage staff to make a real change. Communication is the best way to catalyse action in diversity and inclusion, there is absolutely no doubt about that. 

ENDS

Diversity First PTY Limited

Level 32, 101 Miller Street NORTH SYDNEY, NSW 2060 02 8019 7229 www.diversityfirst.com.au

connect@diversityfirst.com.au

For interviews and high-resolution images, please contact: Theaanna Kiaos +61 451 574 900. Theaanna.Kiaos@diversityfirst.com.au

Theaanna Kiaos is the Managing Director of Diversity First PTY Limited and is the creator of InCulture® a model of Organisational Culture, Diversity and Inclusion.

Diversity First provides consulting solutions to businesses of all sizes and of all sectors in matters pertaining to organisational culture, diversity and inclusion.

​Uniquely qualified, Theaanna has researched crganisational culture through Sydney University, holds a masters in Health Communication and an undergraduate in Psychology. She is also a qualified Change Management Consultant.

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