Inclusivity without Empowerment is Just Lip Service

Photo by  NordWood Themes  on  Unsplash

There’s a lot of talk today about inclusivity. And that’s a good thing. Good to create a culture of inclusivity in business. Giving people in an organization a chance to be part of the decision-making process is always worthwhile as it not only helps set up forward momentum, it also encourages your people to “own” their future. If they are included in creating their career 2.0 within the org, then it stands to reason they will take more care with carving out a positive path. It doesn’t always work out that way, but the idea is pretty solid.

 

Here’s the thing, for the older crowd out there (me), where leadership was much more top down, and where people gathered around a dynamic (often intense) rainmaker, getting comfortable with this model is not especially easy.

For one thing it takes a lot longer. Inclusivity means more ideas, more opinions, a wider net. Working through the intellectual content well means doing it with care, and that is time consuming. It also means that just because you are inviting people in you won’t always like their ideas. But if you don’t empower those decisions you kill the purpose. Inclusivity isn’t just a smart way of dotting your I’s, it requires change, and that can be painful, especially to the status quo. So, if you’re up for it, then take a deep breath before you plunge. It might be a shock to the system, but it’s worth it.