Inclusion is more than an idea. It is a set of habits that can be developed within companies. Last week I wrote about the first habit of inclusion: FAIRNESS and will pursue my blog series with the second habit that is necessary to achieve inclusion in the workplace: Openness




In fact, there are five habits of inclusion: fairness, openness, cooperativeness, support and empowerment. tweet this

Inclusive companies are more successful that non-inclusive ones. This has been shown by studies and well sum up in an article from Forbes: Why Diversity And Inclusion Will Be A Top Priority For 2016
I want to see a more inclusive corporate world because it not only fosters company success but it also gives the opportunity to all employees to share their knowledge, skills and experience.

A. A definition of Openness

The definition of openness can be made at the personal, group and organization level. An open individual will welcome new ideas, new experience, changes that he / she is facing. It is also this notion of being easy to access, no barriers can stop you. You may notice them because they exist but you do not put a negative judgement. An open person accepts what is. Every individual openness evolves on a continuum depending on the subject, the situation, the time he / she find himself. We will usualy define a racist, sexist person as close-minded. The barriers that he sees are the barriers that hold him / her. 

The group dynamics with openness are also very interesting. A new comer can be rejected, partially accepted or embraced in a group. The reason why a person may be accepted relates to the group identity and the one of the new comer. Similarity in culture, language, appearance make the inclusion easier in any kind of group. Open groups will welcome a person who is perceived as different b acknowledging a difference and trying to understand the other one. 

Organization openness is related to the one of the group with the only expection that organization as the unification of individuals to achieve a common goal. Organization have a culture and each subgroup in the organization too. The dynamics that exist within companies can be mapped thanks to social networking analysis, to not confuse with social media. You can identify where are hot spot for communication and where people are left alone. 

B. How can I improve my company openness?

I have a personal theory about openness which is as follow: You are open when you accept that the world around you is a perception that is influenced by your culture, values, and beliefs. In order to create more openness in organization you should try to share your perception with your colleagues and listen to them. Accepting that the perception of the other one is not less or more valuable than yours. It is just a perception. I invite you to read my post on a workshop that you could use in your company. It is based on the poem of "the blind men and the elephant". 

I will write an article on how to change an habit after the Inclusion Series. So keep posted and register to my newsletter at the bottom right of my blog! 

The five habits of inclusive companies: 
  1. THE FIRST HABIT OF INCLUSION IN THE WORKPLACE: FAIRNESS
  2. THE SECOND HABIT OF INCLUSION: OPENNESS
  3. THE THIRD HABIT OF INCLUSION: COOPERATION
  4. THE 4TH HABIT OF INCLUSION: SUPPORT
  5. THE 5TH HABIT OF INCLUSION: Employee empowerment
The working world has change a lot in the past century. More and more companies are doing their best to include diversity in order to benefit from the innovation it brings into companies. Have a look at the "Global Diversity and Inclusion: Fostering Innovation Through a Diverse Workforce" from Forbes for more information on this topic. Developing inclusion in the workplace requires to develop new habits.

In fact, there are five habits of inclusion: fairness, openness, cooperativeness, support and empowerment. tweet this 


In this post I will explain how one can develop Fairness in a company. There is not a one solution fits all and my aim is to help you determine the best next step you can take.


A. A definition of fairness

Fairness is using the same rules for every employee. It is linked with the feeling of justice or injustice one may feel during its exchanges with other employees. If Fairness is a feeling how can you deal with it? There will always be people feeling that they are treated unfairly. Your best strategy is to anticipate in which areas unfairness may show up. In companies fairness can be evaluated in the following area:
  • Performance and talent management: Evaluation & Promotion, Pay & Reward...
  • Leadership and Communication: Conflict resolutions, access to information... 
  • Strategy & Change Management: Work / life Balance, Participation to Strategy & change decision, 
A company is fair as long as every employee knows that he / she will be treated based on the same rules and expectations as anyone else. It is the leadership responsibility to define fairness for itself but now you may wonder: How fair is my company with its employees? 

B. How fair is my company with its employees?

It is important to know where you stand before trying to change the way you manage your company. You may already have an answer to this question or be willing to assess your company fairness. Identifying the areas where there is  a need of clarification is vital. This knowledge will help you build your fairness program and communicate it.

You should evaluate how informed your employees are when it comes to your company fairness program or system. It is always possible to create a  fairness barometer to help you implement a regular evaluation.

C. How can I improve my company fairness?

This answer is always spedific to your company. There is only one company with a specific mix of behavior, employees, managers, culture and so one. I can only give you general advice and would be glad to help you go further, so do not hesitate to contact me. To be fair your company should:
  • Performance and talent management: Have clear rule about Evaluation & Promotion, Pay & Reward... Meaning everyone has access to evaluation, promotion, reward criteria and knows where he / she stands in the pay system. 
  • Leadership and Communication: In case of conflict the resolution is based on facts not feelings, Information is communicated to everyone concerned,  
  • Strategy & Change Management: The Work / life Balance rules applies to everyone, Employees are consulted when a new strategy or  change decision affects their work., 
You should take the time to ensure that the rules apply to everyone. It is possible to create a Fairness Manager Role or make managers responsible for the result of the fairness barometer. My main point is what ever you decide to do. You should decide to do it consciously because fairness in companies increase employee satisfaction which in return increases company success.

In my next post you will learn about the second habit of inclusion and how to implement it in your company. Since then have a great week!


The five habits of inclusive companies: 
  1. THE FIRST HABIT OF INCLUSION IN THE WORKPLACE: FAIRNESS
  2. THE SECOND HABIT OF INCLUSION: OPENNESS
  3. THE THIRD HABIT OF INCLUSION: COOPERATION
  4. THE 4TH HABIT OF INCLUSION: SUPPORT
  5. THE 5TH HABIT OF INCLUSION: Employee empowerment