By: Helm Construction Solutions (buildhelm.com)
This toolkit was developed by Kate Stephenson and Mel Baiser of HELM Construction Solutions with help and feedback from many of our colleagues in the building trades and social justice movements. It includes topics like:
- Defining the Challenge
- Changing Company Culture
- Hiring and Retaining a Diverse Team
- What is Privilege?
- Becoming an Ally
- Additional Resources
“We recognize this is just a first step towards raising awareness of these issues in our industry and our workplaces, but we felt the need to start somewhere.”
“Our goal is to increase the number of women, trans and gender non-conforming folks in the building trades, and to offer some specific help to progressive business owners who want to help but don’t know how to approach the problem.” – Kate Stephenson
If you have feedback on the Toolkit, ideas to share, or suggestions for additions, please email firstname.lastname@example.org.
HELM Construction Solutions works with owners, designers and builders to create high performance and sustainable buildings and businesses. HELM provides a range of innovative services to help your business and your projects run smoothly and efficiently. We are committed to high performance and sustainable building practices that are not only right for the environment, but result in more durable buildings, better indoor air quality, comfort and a significant reduction in the operating costs of your home or business. HELM is a collaborative team with over thirty years of combined construction, management, leadership and education expertise.
[x_button shape=”square” size=”regular” float=”none” href=”http://changethestoryvt.org/wp-content/uploads/2016/12/Breaking-Down-Bias-v1.0-September-2016.pdf” title=”Download the toolkit” target=”blank” info=”none” info_place=”top” info_trigger=”hover”]Download the toolkit.[/x_button]
Source: Harvard Business Review
Authors: David Rock, Heidi Grant Halvorson, Jacqui Grey
“In numerous studies, diversity — both inherent (e.g., race, gender) and acquired (experience, cultural background) — is associated with business success. For example, a 2009 analysis of 506 companies found that firms with more racial or gender diversity had more sales revenue, more customers, and greater profits. A 2016 analysis of more than 20,000 firms in 91 countries found that companies with more female executives were more profitable. In a2011 study management teams exhibiting a wider range of educational and work backgrounds produced more-innovative products. These are mere correlations, but laboratory experiments have also shown the direct effect of diversity on team performance. In a 2006 study of mock juries, for example, when black people were added to the jury, white jurors processed the case facts more carefully and deliberated more effectively.
Under increasing scrutiny, and mindful of the benefits of diversity on the bottom line, many companies are trying to recruit and retain a more diverse workforce. Success has so far been marginal. With so much at stake, why aren’t these companies making more headway? One reason could be that, despite the evidence about their results, homogenous teams just feel more effective. In addition, people believe that diverse teams breed greater conflict than they actually do. Bringing these biases to light may enable ways to combat them.”
[x_button shape=”square” size=”regular” float=”none” href=”https://hbr.org/2016/09/diverse-teams-feel-less-comfortable-and-thats-why-they-perform-better” title=”Diverse Teams Feel Less Comfortable — and That’s Why They Perform Better” target=”blank” info=”none” info_place=”top” info_trigger=”hover”]Read the full article.[/x_button]
“When it comes to issues of race, gender, and diversity in organizations, researchers have revealed the problems in ever more detail. We have found a lot less to say about what does
work — what organizations can do to create the conditions in which stigmatized groups can reach their potential and succeed. That’s why my collaborators — Nicole Stephens
at the Kellogg School of Management and Ray Reagans
at MIT Sloan — and I decided to study what organizations can do to increase traditionally stigmatized groups’ performance and persistence, and curb the disproportionately high rates at which they leave jobs.One tool at any organization’s disposal is the way its leaders choose to talk (or not to talk) about diversity and differences — what we refer to as their diversity approach. Diversity approaches are important because they provide employees with a framework for thinking about group differences in the workplace and how they should respond to them
. We first studied the public diversity statements of 151 big law firms in the U.S. to understand the relationship between how organizations talk about diversity and the rates of attrition of associate-level women and racial minority attorneys at these firms. We assumed that how firms talked about diversity in their statements was a rough proxy for their firm’s approach to diversity more generally.
Two findings were particularly intriguing. First, there are two fundamentally different ways that diversity statements seek to appeal to the stigmatized groups they target. One appeal is to differences and how differences are important. We call this the “value in difference” approach. For example, a value in difference approach advocates for increasing awareness of differences and bias, and signals the organization’s belief that these differences not only improve employees’ experiences in the workplace, but also advance the firm’s bottom-line goals. The other approach is an appeal to equality and fairness irrespective of differences. We call this the “value in equality” approach. For example, a value in equality approach affirms that differences will not be an obstacle to career opportunities and advancement, and that all employees are judged equally and fairly based on their skills, qualifications, and effort.”
[x_button shape=”square” size=”regular” float=”none” href=”https://hbr.org/2016/08/why-your-diversity-program-may-be-helping-women-but-not-minorities-or-vice-versa” title=”Why Your Diversity Program May Be Helping Women but Not Minorities (or Vice Versa)” target=”blank” info=”none” info_place=”top” info_trigger=”hover”]Read the full article[/x_button]