5 top tips on convincing the unconvinced on Inclusion

Not everyone in your organisation will understand what inclusion is or why it’s important. There are lots of reasons why an inclusive mindset and outlook aren’t automatic.

It may be because they are worried about looking like they don’t know something, it could be that exclusion or discrimination hasn’t affected their lives, or that they think that it’s “nice” but has nothing to do with the workplace. As advocates of diversity and inclusion, it is our job to convince the unconvinced by uniting them for inclusion.

If you are struggling to convince people within your organisation or wider network try Inclusive Employers’ top tips to convince the unconvinced:

1. Be strategic

How will focusing on inclusion affect their work, the business or those around them? Choose influential people to focus on and win them round first. If they are a senior person, they will then have an influence on others and do some of your job for you.

2. Build a rapport first

We tend to listen to people we like, so spend time getting to know the person before stating your case can help them to see your perspective.

3. Make it relevant to them

If they are in finance give them information on how inclusion will increase profit and reduce cost; if they are in HR how will it impact recruitment and retention, etc.

4. Strip out unnecessary information

Whichever method of communication you use only include the most important points and then provide an appendix or follow on which includes the finer detail.

5. Be flexible with your communication style

Some may prefer a formal email, others a coffee and a chat. Ask them (or find out from those who know them) what communication style they prefer and flex out of your natural style to meet this.

Finally, don’t give up. It’s hard, we understand that at Inclusive Employers. Get help and support if you need it.

People working or volunteering in inclusion and diversity are doing so because they feel passionate about it and if other people don’t “get it” it can feel very frustrating but keep going! 

If you or your organisation needs more support to build an inclusive culture, explore our website to find out more about Inclusive Employers membership, training, consultancy, qualifications and the Inclusive Employers Standard accreditation.