DEI Strategy vs. Program
Following the summer of 2020, companies scrambled to write statements about DEI, ramped up their commitments, and started making decisions so fast that they seemed almost reactive. Most of them increased their spending with minority-owned businesses and created DEI councils, but these programs yield little to no results if there is no why behind your efforts.
DEI needs to be a strategy. It needs to be more than a statement posted on your website or a poster hanging in the breakroom. Let’s talk about the difference between having a DEI strategy and having programs.
1. Programs exist to address specific parts of DEI within the organization.
2. A DEI strategy ensures that DEI is represented throughout all levels of the organization and is embedded in the internal and external culture.
Think about it, do employee resource groups influence the internal and external culture? Can they ensure that DEI is represented throughout the organization?
Moving the needle forward on diversity, equity and inclusion takes more than just programs. It requires a strategy. Companies that are serious about creating a diverse, equitable, and inclusive culture must invest the time and energy to create a long-term plan and recognize that DEI is a long game.