How Do We Make Inclusive Leadership Sustainable?
Many UK employers have tried a range of approaches to increase the engagement of leaders in building a more diverse workforce. The common problem experienced is that ‘diversity and inclusion’ initiatives are often seen as HR activities, isolated from core business objectives.
Training can become a one-off intervention, unconnected to the day-to-day performance of a manager or leader. Then ‘diversity and inclusion’ objectives in performance reviews can become too focussed on one particular action, such as mentoring someone from a minority group, rather than getting to the heart of how that leader behaves with all their colleagues and clients.
Our inclusive leadership competencies help to overcome this problem of disconnect. They can be explicitly written into the overall definition of management and leadership, and we recommend making them essential criteria in recruiting, promoting and evaluating the performance of leaders. This makes inclusion synonymous with good management and leadership.
Case Study Spotlight
The inclusive leadership project helped to refine the framework that underpins Fujitsu’s Management Accreditation Programme.
Inclusive leadership influenced how good management is defined at Fujitsu and the actions a ‘good manager’ is expected to take. These include: having an inclusive approach; ensuring that managers develop and promote the best talent regardless of their background; and recognising the benefits of a diverse team.
Fujitsu collaborated with Shapiro Consulting and Opportunity Now on the development of a feedback tool for managers that provides insight on management behaviours with linked development workshops. The tool has seven dimensions that are:
- My manager gives clear direction
- My manager gives regular feedback and is open to receiving feedback
- My manager develops committed co-workers and a collaborative team
- My manager cares about me
- My manager creates a cohesive team
- My manager encourages development
- My manager builds trust