Diversity & Inclusion is a hot topic in the 21st century, as more and more organizations try to adopt D&I practices in their hiring processes and foster D&I amongst their employees. The pandemic has also made organizations rethink and change their old ways of doing things to be able to cater to the well-being of their employees. While the benefits of having a diverse workforce are widely known (e.g. wider candidate pool, increased creativity and innovation, economic competitiveness etc.), is this enough? What does it mean for an organization to be truly diverse and inclusive?
Global Mobility is key in driving a diverse workforce
This is where Global Mobility leaders step in. The role of Global Mobility in driving a diverse workforce is key. For an organization to be called truly diverse, having an international presence is not the end-goal, but only the beginning. Global Mobility leaders should be mindful of the challenges of diversity and they should be able to step at the forefront of equal opportunity amongst assignees.
Organizations are forced to change their old “traditional” way of thinking as they become more diverse. This will also improve the image of the organization to outsiders. By having a more diverse team, global mobility organizations will also be more culturally aware and have employees with a good variety of language skills at hand and thus companies will be able to offer better services to global markets.
What is the ideal skill set for an assignee population?
An organization that demonstrates Diversity & Inclusion is one whose workforce, as well as their assignees, are representative of the wider population. This means that a diverse organization’s assignees cannot be homogenous. Rather, they should come from a variety of different backgrounds and have a diverse set of skills. When it comes to the ideal skill set an assignee population should have, cultural adaptability, flexibility, language skills, curiosity and emotional intelligence are only some of the key employee characteristics that are essential in any successful global assignment. Once these skills are integrated in the assignee population, not only will the assignment be successful but the ROI will also increase.
Overcoming cultural biases
The 21st century has also transformed attitudes towards gender. This means that international organizations should include more women and LGBTQ+ employees in their international assignments, and reap the benefits of having a diverse workforce. If global mobility teams can overcome -unconscious- biases and embrace diversity, they will have access to a wider talent pool, and they will improve their reputation within the global business.
Working remotely is the new normal
The pandemic has made work-from-home the new normal and it is forcing employers to be more flexible when it comes to addressing the needs of the employee and making sure the employee knows they have somebody to count on.
The workforce is more diverse now as people from different cultures, living in different locations can work remotely on the same team. Suddenly the office is not located in a set location, but it is spread around the globe. This demands increased inclusiveness and sensitivity from both employees and leaders.
Making sure that the assignee population represents the diversity of society as a whole is the only way to ensure success in an international assignment. Global mobility leaders will be responsible for carrying out this new workforce and they will act as the catalyst for the integrity of global mobility now and in the future.
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