Gender-Inclusivity: Yes, you can bring your true self to work
The pharmaceutical industry is becoming increasingly globalized and competitive and for us to thrive professionally, we must be willing and able to bring our true selves to the work we do.
The role of a company’s culture is more significant than ever before, driven by a new generation of workers that expect diversity on all fronts – of people, technology, workspace and wellness. It’s essential we create an environment in which everyone feels comfortable expressing themselves – only then will we attract, retain, motivate and empower the best talent.
But how do we foster an inclusive workplace where people can bring their true selves to work and feel happy, motivated and productive?
We need to start by resetting the corporate climate to value the differences within their workforce- who they are and how they work. Diversity and inclusion need to be top of the boardroom agenda, supported by robust policies and accountability, if we are to have healthy and invested employees.
Fostering an inclusive environment takes time and effort from everyone in an organization and it can only be the result of a conscientious change to be more inclusive.
As an industry, our success is built on people from a range of different cultures and backgrounds and we need to not only ensure everyone has a voice, but we’re also listening. Diversity goals need to be significant and instilled into all actions, and that includes what we click and “like” on social media, in both a personal and professional capacity.
Creating a gender inclusive workplace
Creating an environment that is inclusive and welcoming regardless of gender isn’t a checkbox exercise. It involves diligently listening to team members to explore and understand their needs and working with them to take small, positive steps to show all team members that their workplace is a safe place for them to be themselves.
Most of all, it involves commitment from the very top of an organization to make gender inclusivity and diversity a priority.
At UDG, we know our people are the key to everything we do. This is why it was important to appoint a Diversity, Equity and Inclusion Officer – to take charge of our efforts to create a more welcoming environment for our team members, and to ensure diversity and inclusivity are top of mind.
Positive steps towards greater inclusion
We are at the start of our journey, and already we are taking positive measures towards greater gender inclusion. Crucially, following close conversations with our team, we have launched a new initiative whereby team members have the option to include their gender pronouns on their email signatures and/or on our company human resource information system. It allows any employee across the globe to search for a coworker and see their pronouns.
The use of gender pronouns in the workplace can help create a more open working environment and is an important part of LGBTQ+ inclusion.
This is a small, but vital step, which will allow all of our team members to communicate clearly to the business how they should be addressed. It offers our peers to feel supported in their true identities by their team.
Just the beginning
Even small measures can make a big positive difference to existing team members and prospective employees. The key is to take the first step, and to work in partnership with your team to take them with you on the inclusitivty journey. That is what we have done. Together these are the steps we have proudly taken, and we look forward to continuing to engage more with our team in the coming months and years to find new ways to create a more inclusive workplace for colleagues of all identities.