As we are emerging from the pandemic, many organizations find they need to hire personnel. They want a diverse talent pool and want to know how to track diverse talents. There are no pat answers, but here are few thoughts to consider.
A diverse candidate WANTS:
1. An attractive starting salary and bonus.
2. Student loan repayment benefits.
3. Pay equity.
5. Remote work opportunities.
6. Generous leave time. Examples: family leave for births and deaths, sabbaticals, and time of for bar prep.
7. Meaningful Mentorship.
9. Access to prime assignments, and important leaders.
10. Transparency in work expectations and the pathway for promotions and raises. Those need to be rooted in objectivity.
11. Inclusion in networking and social opportunities.
12. To be seen as a diverse person AND as an individual. Take the effort and time in getting to know the person.
13. A commitment to recruit, hire, promote, and retain diverse talent.
14. Support in joining and being involved in mainstream and diverse affinity professional associations. Simultaneous memberships in National Bar Association, Woman Lawyers Association, Black Women Lawyers Association, and the American Bar is not unusual.
15. Everyday inclusion: not to be overlooked, taken for granted, stereotyped, misgendered, or tokenized.
16. Employee resource groups. Alternatively an understanding that minorities and underrepresented group members may come together based on their shared identity and life/work experiences and it’s okay. (Yes, it’s okay for the two Black employees to go to lunch together.)
17. A robust and ongoing training and awareness program on diversity which includes diverse topics and presenters.
18. A facility design and decor that promote inclusion. Start with your artwork, bathrooms, and coffee/comfort (“abc’s”) and think of them as employee experiences. Do they project a message of inclusion?
19. Clear harassment and discrimination policies that are followed.
The wants help to promote psychological safety, bringing one’s whole self to work, employee engagement and satisfaction, and belonging for the candidate.
A diverse candidate DOES NOT WANT:
1. To be the in-house expert on diversity, unless hired for that role.
2. To be the sole employee from their diverse background.
3. To be appointed as The Face of diversity and called upon whenever the organization needs to prove its diversity.
4. To be hired only because of their diverse identity. Your organization has to make it clear that the person was hired for knowledge, skills, and talents. Otherwise, the candidate will be seen and treated as less than equal.
5. To be treated special and different than others.
The candidate’s goal is to be welcomed, included, respected, and belong.
For those who like lists and want to check things off, remember diversity is not a checklist item. The diverse candidate’s want list is general. It does not delve into what certain races, ages and other identities want and find most important. It does not represent the wants of any specific individual. It is the beginning, a good practical start in gaining insight to what a diverse candidate wants as your organization seeks to build a diverse and engaged talent pool.
Additional Resource: Want More Diverse Candidates? Here’s How To Improve Your Recruiting Strategy https://www.forbes.com/sites/forbescoachescouncil/2020/08/26/want-more-diverse-candidates-heres-how-to-improve-your-recruiting-strategy/