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Strategies and Practices to Promote Intersectionality in Corporate Workplaces

While corporations have implemented initiatives and strategies to promote an intersectional approach in the workplace, there is still a long way to go.

In the U.S. 7% of adults identify as LGBTQ+, including 21% of Gen Z, according to a study published by Gallup. Concerning this data, a recent article published in the Harvard Business Review analyzes how these changing demographics in American society urge corporate workplaces to “evolve policies, and processes to embrace intersectionality” in various areas, including recruitment, retention, and promotions.

The authors of the piece, Marlette Jackson and Paria Rajai, address this issue through talent-management strategies and real-world examples.

For example, Jackson and Rajai mention that many talent and hiring teams have been trying to reassess traditional hiring methods due to a talent shortage. According to data published by Manpower Group, 75% of employers report difficulty in filling roles. However, the strategies that they are implementing might also be part of the problem.

[A] strategy some organizations use to enhance diversity is to use AI-based hiring tools, which claim to reduce unconscious bias in hiring decisions. However, the problem of bias in AI is well documented, and a less-discussed impact is the compounding effect on multiply minoritized talent (those who hold identities of more than one historically discriminated-against group).

Some of the inclusion policies and practices the authors recommend to improve recruitment include:

  • implementing skills-based hiring for roles

  • eliminating educational prerequisites from job descriptions

  • ensuring AI screening tools are paired with human support and review to avoid dependence on technology that might exacerbate diversity and talent-shortage challenges.

Despite advancements in the understanding of intersectionality, its integration into corporate workplaces is still lagging. Many organizations realize that struggles related to culture and recruitment “might stem from a monolithic approach to policies, processes, and mindsets that haven’t aligned with the intersectionality of their workforce.” In an effort to overcome these challenges, organizations are adopting an intersectional lens in hopes of gaining a competitive advantage and creating a more inclusive and equitable workplace culture.

You can read the full article here.

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