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Creating Inclusive Spaces: A guide for everyone, no matter what your Status or Gender is

Yes it is International Women's Day, which highlights the perfect time to reflect on how we can be more inclusive in every area of our lives. Inclusivity empowers a diverse range of voices, creating a sense of belonging and psychological safety. These principles allow everyone to contribute their best thinking, an openness to share and pave the way for innovation.

Have you ever felt alone, yet you're in a room full of people. I'm a strong advocate for inclusion, and I believe it's the responsibility of each of us to be the person who actively brings everyone into the conversation. At work or in any social setting. So how do we do that?

Inclusive Behaviours

  • Embrace Authenticity: Inclusive people are genuine, transparent, and willing to admit their limitations. This creates trust, showing it's okay for others to be their full selves.

  • Cultivate Curiosity and Empathy: Take time to understand other perspectives, challenges, and needs of others. Be curious, ask questions, and genuinely listen.

  • Champion Equity: Recognise that not everyone starts from the same place. Work to level the playing field, making sure opportunities and resources are accessible to everyone.

  • Value Diverse Perspectives: Inclusive people understand that unique viewpoints spark creativity and problem-solving. Facilitate discussions where different opinions are encouraged and respected.

  • Empower Others: Give people around you the space to speak up, take initiative, and bring them into the conversation. Encourage them to share their unique contributions.

Psychological Safety is the Bedrock of Inclusion

A psychologically safe space is where individuals feel comfortable voicing ideas, asking questions, and taking risks without fear of judgement or ridicule. To foster this:

  • Show Vulnerability: Share your own challenges and mistakes. This signals to others that it's okay to be imperfect and opens the door for deeper connections.

  • Celebrate Diverse Thinking: Actively highlight the positive impact of different perspectives and contributions.

  • Facilitate Respectful Dialogue: Establish ground rules for discussions and intervene when conversations become personal or dismissive.

  • Respond to Feedback with Gratitude: Be receptive to constructive criticism and use it as an opportunity to improve and to show that growth is valued.

#InspireInclusion. Every Day.

Building inclusive is not a one-time event, rather think of it as a continuous journey of learning, growth, and conscious effort. By prioritising these principles in our workplaces, homes, and communities, we create spaces where everyone feels valued, heard, and empowered. That empowerment allows us to collaborate and create in ways that simply aren't possible without diversity and inclusion.

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