Berger Leadership Blog

Jul 22, 2022

The importance of inclusive leadership

Without a healthy and inclusive work environment, employee satisfaction and productivity spirals. As leaders, it’s our duty to show those in our organizations that we care about them, and that can be shown through incorporating Diversity, Equity, Inclusion and Belonging (DEIB) practices into the workplace.

In a recent article on BetterUp, author Adam Wood discusses the best, most effective approaches to fostering DEIB in the workplace; and why managers are the ‘secret sauce’ to a truly inclusive work environment.

Specifically, Wood highlights the influence that managers have and how that can translate into a strong capacity to impact change in the workplace. Since frontline managers interact the most with their immediate teams, individual employees feel more of an influence from these specific individuals in the organization.

So, what does the profile of an inclusive leader look like?

According to Wood, inclusive leaders can develop six key behaviors to help them to promote an environment that truly gives employees a sense of belonging, including:

  • Relationship building with others authentically and supportively;
  • Recognizing people for their work, efforts, and growth;
  • Empathizing with employees by listening to them wholeheartedly;
  • Socially connecting with others to help build an overall positive team mental state;
  • Encouraging participation by seeking feedback and input from all members of the team (even those who do not always speak up); and
  • Aligning teams through a shared vision or goal.

By exhibiting these skills to those in our organizations, we will be able to help our employees feel included and valued; an important practice that can be overlooked. It’s a good reminder to make sure we recognize all parties in our organizations and spread the word so others can learn from it as well.

In fact, our very own Vice President of Regulatory Affairs Ann Petros sat down with NCUA Chairman Todd Harper in a new CUPP podcast episode this week discussing insights on DEIB specifically within the credit union community. Give it a listen and feel free to let us know your thoughts.

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