How To Create a Diverse Workplace in Hospitality
Creating a diverse workplace in hospitality has never been more important to hospitality employees.
Now more than ever, the top talent in your industry wants to work with companies capable of offering diverse, flexible, and empathetic working environments. D.E.I. (Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion) determines which candidates will apply for your roles and if your existing staff will stay
Research consistently demonstrates diverse hospitality businesses are more innovative and creative because they allow for the melding of different perspectives. According to one McKinsey study, diverse teams are 35% more likely to achieve above-average financial returns for your business.
Unfortunately, although most hospitality employers are beginning to recognise the need for diversity, ensuring you have a process to embrace D.E.I. can be complex. It’s easy to fall into patterns with your hiring strategies that diminish diversity opportunities.
So, what can you do?
1. Develop an Understanding of Workplace Diversity
First, build an understanding of what workplace diversity means in hospitality. For most companies, diversity starts with ensuring their team members include people from different genders, races, and religions. However, it’s important not to overlook other concepts like language and personality, sexual orientation, age, and disability.
Business leaders can often struggle with diversity when they’re unsure what it means. It’s difficult to be all-inclusive when you’re unsure what kind of hidden biases might influence your hiring and promotional decisions.
If you are uncertain about your diversity process, there are online and offline training programmes available to help business leaders and hiring managers question their thought processes and improve their understanding of diversity.
Expanding your education can also help you see how detrimental a lack of diversity can be. It doesn’t only damage business creativity but can also reduce employee engagement and lead to issues with internal conflict.
2. Rethink Cultural Fit
The concept of “cultural fit” is referenced by many hospitality hiring managers when looking for new candidates to fill essential roles. Companies want candidates who will blend well with the existing employees in a team.
However, hiring for cultural fit can be a subjective process if you’re not careful. It’s easy to let your perspective of this concept lead you to hire only people from a certain personality group. While it’s important to ensure everyone in your team feels like a welcome part of the talent mix, it is crucial to allow different insights and perspectives from various backgrounds.
Rather than relying entirely on the somewhat intangible concept of cultural fit, try flipping the script and asking what each potential candidate might be able to add to your culture. Focus on hiring people with shared values and ethics rather than similar personalities.
3. Constantly Check for Bias
Bias can be a serious problem because it is often unconscious. Sometimes, we find ourselves searching for a certain kind of person because we’re trying to match a person who held the position previously.
Other times, we might be influenced by biases which we’re not aware of initially. For instance, what they’re wearing or how much you like their personality.
Though hiring bias is difficult to avoid completely, it’s something you can overcome with mindfulness and some helpful strategies. For instance, using competency-based interviews with standardised interview questions can be beneficial.
4. Improving Workplace Diversity Recruitment
Recruitment is often the part of building a diverse workplace that hospitality businesses need the most help with. Ultimately, it’s hard to maintain a completely objective approach to finding candidates and working through potential options.
Some of the ways you can adjust your recruitment plans for diversity include:
- Updating job descriptions: Rethink the language you use when writing job descriptions, and avoid words with a specific gender appeal.
- Casting a wider net: Listing your jobs in more places helps you attract a more diverse range of candidates. You could even consider looking for people in colleges and universities.
- Use technology: Diversity recruiting software and A.I. tools help sort through and shortlist candidates. It supports businesses overcome several unconscious biases.
The easiest way to improve your recruitment strategy is to work with a dedicated hospitality recruitment professional. They understands your specific needs. They can help to give you a more objective strategy for finding new talent.
Many specialist recruiters like ourselves are trained in D.E.I. and proactively build diverse talent pools of hospitality candidates. Find out more about how we can help you implement a D.E.I. hiring process, get in contact with us here.
5. Remember inclusion
Following improving your recruitment strategy, the next step is ensuring everyone feels equally included in your hospitality team. Being a more diverse workplace is an admirable ambition for any business. However, it doesn’t work if some staff members feel more valued or “seen” than others.
Work on building a more inclusive environment by regularly collecting feedback from all staff members. Your team can offer insights into whether you’re still showing any unconscious biases.
It’s also helpful to look at your paths for career advancement in the business. What kind of steps do employees need to take to improve their chances of a promotion? Are certain team members more likely to be considered than others?
You can even look into building a diversity and inclusion committee. This can help collect insights from other staff members and solve issues.
We are a catering and hospitality recruitment agency. We have supported many businesses like yours, and recruited the staff they need to drive their business forward. If you are struggling with turnover and would like us to review and support your recruitment, get in touch today. You can call the office on 0121 314 9365 or click the link below to send us your details.