Thursday, November 10, 2011

Inclusivity - An Elusive Concept

Have you heard of the term inclusivity? Do you know what it means? We are trying to start a women's forum in my company and our aim is to bring as women-inclusive a work culture as possible.

According to a quick google search i did, this is the definition of inclusivity:
"(Social Welfare) (Sociology) (Government, Politics & Diplomacy) the fact or policy of not excluding members or participants on the grounds of gender, race, class, sexuality, disability, etc." How does this apply to a work culture? It means that at work, you cannot be passed over for a promotion as a woman, just because your boss feels you are more likely to get married soon, have a child soon, or are pregnant or already have a young child. This is the big picture. But there are also tinier details where inclusivity comes in. Like the cases where your team decides to go for a team dinner. Most women I know cannot stay the whole stretch of time required for a team dinner. Transport and safety issues in India ensure that they need to complete the dinner by 9 PM while the rest of the team stays back for another couple of hours and enjoys each other's company. Just by being female, you are excluded from this team building exercise.

Inclusivity implies an understanding of each other's differences and building a work culture that thrives on this understanding. What other common scenarios can you think of where inclusivity is required?

1 comment:

Lakshmi said...

well... sports ?! Outdoor events arranged are mostly cricket for men.. why not a few which women also play.. like.. Tennis or Javelin or Basketball or all those games we used to play at school?!

And team outings.. women hesitate when it comes to a two day trip or even a day trip, especially married women with kids. Maybe for inclusivity, people should organize a team outing with family?!