The shift from focusing on diversity to focusing on inclusion is in process. Not because it's "nice" to do, but because in this increasingly global and increasingly diverse world, it is need to do for businesses that wish to remain competitive from both an employer and a market standpoint.
The shift is in progress. No specific date or year highlights when it started. Even our conversations with CEOs and other business leaders from years ago included an element of inclusion. We've been talking for a long time about promoting a welcoming, respectful workplace. Who wouldn't say that they want to have a workplace that is welcoming and respectful? That is really a reflection of inclusion—yet we don't always put a label on it.
Most importantly, in the past, when we focused on inclusion--especially when we called it diversity—the focus was on women and people of color. Inadvertently, this focus caused us to be exclusionary. Inclusion, as we say, is for everybody. And, again, it's not nice to do, it's need to do. Why? Because whether it's an African American woman or a Caucasian man being excluded it impacts the business and that's what it's all about.
Being inclusive will improve your business. It will make you more competitive. It will boost your bottom line. Join the evolution.