“We’re not all the same, and we like it that way.” That’s our Diversity & Inclusion (D&I) Commitment Statement here at Coast Capital. It’s simple but impactful.
We work hard to create an atmosphere where employees are encouraged to be themselves and are respected for their unique experiences and perspectives. Why? because this benefits everyone.
D&I fosters higher employee engagement, more creativity and innovation, reduced employee turnover and overall better organizational results. Pretty impressive, right? Here is a detailed breakdown of why, how and what Coast Capital is doing to ensure our organization is diverse and inclusive.
Why D&I is important in the workplace
Typically, employees spend more time at work than they do at home, so ensuring they’re able to bring their whole selves to work is critical. Plus, employees do their best work when they feel as though their perspectives, opinions, and feedback are heard.
When D&I becomes a priority in organizations, research has shown that innovation, creativity and results increase. When employees feel included they’re more committed to their organizations.
Business aside, supporting D&I in the workplace is simply the right thing to do. Everyone wants to be treated respectfully, be valued for their contributions, and feel empowered.
Advancing D&I at Coast Capital
While we’re early on in our D&I journey, we’ve accomplished a lot and it’s been so impactful to see the progress we’ve made. It keeps us excited and motivated for the future.
In a short timeframe, we’ve developed our D&I Commitment Statement and launched several initiatives:
- The Diversity & Inclusion Council
- 6 employee-led networks focused on different groups, called our Affinity Networks
- A task force focusing on Women, with more to come later in the year
Our Employee-Led Affinity Networks
We want these networks to provide a sense of belonging for those who self-identify with the respective network. We also want to encourage allies to step forward and get involved in the conversation. Currently, we have 6 affinity networks in varying stages of maturity.
- Our Business Women’s Network, formed in 2018, is focused on advancing gender parity while connecting, developing and building increased confidence for women.
- The Pride Inclusivity Network, also formed in 2018, is focused on championing the voice of our LGBTQ+ community within Coast, to remove visible or invisible barriers to make our environments more safe and inclusive for all.
In 2019, we launched the following networks which are in the process of defining their purpose and vision:
- Abilities Network
- Indigenous Network
- MOSAIC Network
- YOUth Network
The purpose of these networks is to be truly employee-led, help raise awareness, appreciation, education and have fun!
Championing D&I: Resources
D&I impacts us all; it isn’t just an HR program. We all play a role in bringing it to life within our respective organizations. I would encourage getting involved with local organizations who support Diversity & Inclusion. Here are a couple resources for you to explore:
Canadian Centre for Diversity & Inclusion
Canadian Centre for Diversity & Inclusion has been integral through our D&I journey and guided many other leading organizations on theirs.
They host many informative webinars and in-person communities of practice. CCDI brings a wealth of knowledge through their great resources available through their website.
Canada’s Top 100 Employers awards organizations
Canada’s Top 100 Employers awards organizations who are leading the way in D&I with “Canada’s Best Diversity Employer’s” awards. Check out all the winners on their website to see what kind of inspiration they can spark for you.
Do your research, see how you can get involved and do your part. Diversity and inclusion are so important in both personal and professional lives, and I’m so excited to be a part of it here at Coast Capital.
What this means to me:
I’m so grateful to be a part of our meaningful D&I journey. It’s truly impacted me both personally and professionally. I always strived to be inclusive but this work has provided me with a different perspective and further ignited my curiosity to educate myself and be a true Diversity & Inclusion champion in all facets of my life.
Simply put, we’re all human but we all have a very different story to tell – each as important as the other. Instead of being afraid of our differences, we should look to them as strengths. There’s no better feeling than being accepted for who you are and what you bring to the table.