Diversity has never been more fashionable. Organizations are buzzing with initiatives: hiring consultants, appointing DEI chiefs, mandating training, and talking about social justice. But is all of this making much of a difference?
It doesn’t seem so. In recent years, researchers have documented surprisingly feeble outcomes associated with diversity-training sessions, initiatives to reduce prejudice, and implicit-bias training. However well-intentioned, these cures may be treating the wrong disease, which involves not just a lack of diversity but misdirected attention.
The truth is, diversity policies alone aren’t enough to bring about meaningful change in the workplace. To reap the rewards of the varied perspectives and experiences that your employees bring to the office, you need to direct your attention toward them. But that’s not easy to do when their roles and offices are hidden from you, when they look different, or when they don’t have all the…
This article was written by Sheen S. Levine and originally published on hbr.org