Each and every one of us has a role in DE&I (Diversity, Equity & Inclusion). As individuals, we’re the ones who can choose to embrace diversity, take an equitable approach and include others. That means you too – you are that someone who has the power to make others feel that they belong.  Do you?  Think for a moment what you’ve done recently to ensure others feel that they belong. 

Diversity is essential in today’s workplace, not just because it’s the right thing to do, but also because different people from different backgrounds encourages greater innovation, creativity, and happier employees.  This is through the sharing and consideration of varying ideas and perspectives, and for this to really bloom, people need to feel like they belong, can speak up and are listened to.   

It is not always easy to know the right things to do or say to ensure others feel that they belong. However by thinking about how we express our own values and inclusive behaviours we can help others show their inclusive selves in the workplace.

Watch these top tips from your employee-led networks on how to be inclusive to your Carnival UK colleagues:


Seven ways to be an inclusive colleague

Carnival UK is a member of Inclusive Employers; experts on workplace inclusion for employers who are committed to prioritising inclusion and creating truly inclusive workplaces. Below we’ve shared their suggested seven ways to be an inclusive colleague. 

1. Be yourself – be your authentic self
Be brave enough to show up at your workplace. When working with your teams be authentic, remember that whatever you put out there will be reflected back.

Ensure that your values shine through and take time to speak and get to know everyone in your team. Share your own differences with them and remember to treat everyone with respect.

2. Speak up about inclusion
Following on from being your authentic self – always speak up in a healthy way ensuring that your decision aligns with your values and beliefs. Don’t be afraid to be the lone voice in the room. Managers value employees who are willing to step out of the pack to educate others.
3. Think about how you communicate
Be mindful of the words that you use. If words are not used correctly, they can be misinterpreted. So, for instance, when opening a conversation with your team avoid using gender-specific words like, ‘guys’ ‘ladies’ or ‘dudes’, especially in the presence of gender non-conforming or mixed-gender individuals. This could result in misgendering, and cut off team members from the conversation.

Be patient, always listen and allow others to speak and express themselves. Respect the time of the person you are addressing, give them your full attention by being sensitive and understanding that interruption and over-talking can imply.

Consider your approach. If you know someone finds it uncomfortable to discuss Inclusion then find a way that they can easily digest it. Treat people and groups fairly—that is, based on their unique characteristics, rather than on stereotypes.

4. Respond from a place of personal experience
When contributing to a conversation use lines like “in my opinion” or “based on what I have read and learned” or “according to my experience”. Don’t dismiss or dispel contributions from other people. This is important and regardless of whether you agree, it helps keep the conversation open to all.

If you feel that an opinion is so different from yours then try using the terms like, ‘That’s a different perspective’ or ‘I see your point of view’ or ‘I never thought of it that way’. This again keeps the conversation inclusive. Always makes sure that there is time for questions and replies.

5. Pronouns
It’s ok to ask which pronoun an individual prefers, in fact it is seen as a positive trait showing your curiosity and acceptance. By doing this you welcome everyone into the conversation, and you lead by example to the rest of your team.

Find out more about using pronouns at Carnival UK

6. Challenge stereotypes
Whether it be about unconscious biases, lack of information, the influence of the media, or teachings coming from our cultural and social beliefs, stereotypes can lead to actions and reactions that can sometimes be exclusive and unfair. When meeting someone new, recognise the power that your own biases have, how they are making you feel. Take a breath before you move forward.
7. Support your co-workers’ differences
Educate yourself in co-workers backgrounds. Listen to them when they tell you about their religious celebrations. Have an International Bake off. How many different types of cakes can your teams introduce into the workplace?


What would make you feel more included at Carnival UK? Add it to the comments below. 

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1 Comment

  1. Eithne Williamson on

    Love this video, so great to have practical hints and tips and raise awareness of the forums and opportunities available. Another important step to aid everyone to belong

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