Diversity vs Inclusion: What is the difference?

Diversity vs Inclusion: What is the difference?
Last Updated: July 2, 2022

People with various experiences, viewpoints, and thinking processes unite and collaborate to generate a stronger, more successful work output, which is the promise of diversity. According to a study, diverse teams make better business. There is work to be done to create bridges and highlight our commonalities.  


The term \"diversity and inclusion\" refers to both the workforce mix of a firm and the policies and procedures to eliminate barriers and ensure that all employees have equal access to opportunities and assistance. The ultimate objective is to guarantee that all workers, regardless of gender, race, nationality, sexual orientation, or age, are treated fairly and equitably; nevertheless, diversity and inclusion are journeys, not destinations. A well-crafted diversity and inclusion plan may assist a company in making more fair recruiting decisions and creating a healthier workplace where employees feel acknowledged and encouraged.


While humans have unlimited differences, most of us instinctively define diversity by a few social categories like gender, ethnicity, and age. Although it is frequently used in conjunction with diversity, inclusion is a distinct concept. As opposed to diversity, inclusion is defined by SHRM as \"the creation of a work environment in which all persons are treated fairly and respectfully, have equal access to opportunities and resources, and can fully contribute to the organizations success.\"


Understanding and respect are essential components of workplace inclusion. It is vital to ensure that everyones thoughts and opinions are heard and appropriately considered in order to create a more inclusive workplace where everyone feels respected. Creating a work environment where everyone feels welcomed and included in decision-making is exceedingly tough and requires constant support to succeed.


It is the right thing to do, but having a diversity and inclusion plan is essential. The quest to make every employee feel safe and supported at work is never-ending, but great progress has been made in recent years in making diversity and inclusion a key component of conducting business. Small and medium-sized enterprises have an even greater impact on office fairness and equity.


What is the difference between diversity & inclusion?

Understanding the distinctions and how they influence corporate culture: In the Workplace, Diversity vs Inclusion.


Understanding the differences between diversity and inclusion can be tough. The phrases diversity and inclusion are sometimes misconstrued in the workplace because they are used interchangeably rather than independently. They are, however, two distinct notions that are both vital to employee recruitment and retention.


Inclusion refers to the actions and social standards that ensure everyone feels welcome. Diversity refers to the features and characteristics that make people distinct. Inclusion is necessary for diversity efforts to thrive, but it also benefits employee engagement and productivity. Diversity is the \"what\" and inclusion is the \"how\" in your company, according to Rita Mitjans, ADPs Chief Diversity and Social Responsibility Officer. Inclusion focuses on efforts to enable employees with all of the attributes above (plus thousands more) to feel safe, happy, and valued. In contrast, diversity focuses on the demographics of your workplace (gender, ethnicity, age, professional background, sexual orientation, and so on).


Diversity and inclusion are two notions that are related but not interchangeable. Diversity refers to an entitys makeup or representation. Inclusion refers to how successfully different groups of peoples contributions, presence, and opinions are appreciated and incorporated into an area. Although a diverse environment with many different genders, colours, nations, sexual orientations, and identities exists, only the viewpoints of select groups are valued or have any authority or influence.




The features and elements that distinguish an individual.

Refers to the activities and social conventions that make someone feel welcome and secure.

A concept that brings people from all backgrounds together in one location

Implemented methods and techniques to make diversity work.

Achieved when hiring managers and recruiters strive for diversity in the hiring process and battle bias.

When team members feel psychologically comfortable and included in the workplace, they achieve this goal.

In order to work, he relies on inclusion.

It is critical for workplace diversity to be successful.


How does D&I lead to Organizational Success

A diversity, equity, and inclusion (DEI) program is beneficial. Its not always easy to quantify the impact of diversity and inclusion, but research has identified a few specific benefits of diversity in the workplace.

According to the CFP analysis, organizations with two-dimensional diversity are more likely to benefit financially. Gender, race, age, religious background, socioeconomic background, sexual orientation, disability, and nationality are examples of inherent diversity. In contrast, cultural fluency, generational savvy, gender smarts, social media skills, cross-functional knowledge, global mindset, military experience, and language skills are examples of acquired diversity.


  1. It improves productivity

According to a McKinsey & Company analysis, diversified firms perform better, particularly when their leadership is diverse. According to the findings,

  • Organizations in the top quartile with gender-diverse leadership teams were 21% more likely than their industry peers to have above-average profitability.
  • Organizations with a diverse leadership team are 33 percent more likely to outperform their competitors.


  1. Promotes a Positive Workplace Culture

Recruiting a varied staff gives an organizations culture personality. However, diversity is only one factor to consider. Equity and inclusion are also crucial. Together,

  • Equity refers to offering equal opportunity to all employees, particularly those with fewer possibilities in the past. Making all employees feel welcomed, supported, and valued is known as inclusion.
  • It is possible to create a more inclusive and positive workplace culture by implementing diversity and inclusion training to address unconscious biases and establishing policies and processes to support diversity. Employees will be happier and more engaged if they feel involved in your organization.


  1. Encourages creativity

Race, gender, handicap, and religion are all examples of diversity. Employees of various ages, education, talents, degrees of seniority, and local and international origins can all be included. A varied workforce may bring various unique ideas and solutions to the table because of their knowledge, experience, and abilities. This combined creative power can assist your business in streamlining operations and developing new, more efficient ways.

  • Make organizational systems that are more functional.
  • Influence public policy.
  • Internally and within communities, introduce new projects.
  • Furthermore, these innovations can be shared with other public sector enterprises to benefit them.


  1. Recruiting a larger talent pool

Companies benefit from diversity in recruiting the greatest available talent. Recruiting with diversity has the obvious benefit of providing firms with a bigger talent pool from which to choose personnel. Almost two-thirds of job seekers examine a companys commitment to diversity when making an employment decision.

According to the report, diverse recruiting has additional benefits. Younger candidates respect diversity and current employees of diverse employers are more inclined to suggest their company to others interested in working for companies that prioritize diversity and social responsibility.


Examples of Diversity & Inclusion Activities


Workplace interpersonal links promote inclusion and diversity and a 38% increase in business revenue. Work gatherings are a wonderful opportunity to get to know your coworkers better. Getting out of the office or experiencing new things allows everyone to communicate and trust each other on a whole new level. 


These are some team-building exercises that promote diversity and inclusion while. According to research, employees become more involved in the office after bonding, so consider holding events that include these activities to alter your workplace.


  1. Organize a Happy Hour

Many organizations organize happy hours for their employees, but those who dont drink may feel left out. Your company can still have an inclusive happy hour by serving a mix of alcoholic and non-alcoholic beverages. Look up recipes and pick a few amusing drinks to go with the snacks to encourage team-bonding chats.


  1. Arrange for a Heritage Potluck

Everyone grew up uniquely, which may cause them to feel isolated from their coworkers. Plan a heritage potluck to break down the barriers. Everyone should bring a dinner or side dish based on their familys customs. Over plenty of excellent cuisines, youll celebrate the variety of your workplace.


  1. Creating a Gender-Neutral Jar

Language is an important aspect of creating a welcoming workplace. Someone should put a slip of paper with their name in a jar every time they say anything harmless but gender-specific, such as addressing a group as \"men.\" By the end of the week, whoever has the fewest slips in the pot has won a prize for learning to use more inclusive language.


  1. Volunteer in the community

Volunteering in the community can teach team members about privilege. Serving food to the homeless in your community, putting together houses with donation groups, or organizing a charity event will make everyone appreciate what they have and the people around them.


  1. Compare and contrast generations perspectives

Workplace age disparities might make people feel left out of conversations and friend groups. Ask questions for each age group to answer to bridge the generational gap. Everyone will be able to bond over what used to make them feel distant from one other once they answer questions about their favourite music as a kid or the first car they drove.


Diversity and inclusion are difficult to summarize since they are catchall terms encompassing a wide range of issues. For example, ensuring that LGBTQ+ employees feel welcome in the workplace or that workers of diverse races have a voice will require a different approach than ensuring that more women are hired into management positions. People shape workplace culture, which is the atmosphere of the working environment. A company with a strong culture, where everyone feels respected and involved, will positively impact everything from recruiting to engagement to productivity.


This article was written by Trish Makiwa, a consultant at the Industrial Psychology Consultants. She can be contacted at trish@ipcconsultants.com

Cindy Baker
Trish Makiwa
I completed my Bachelor Honors in Psychology at the University of Zimbabwe. I have been working at Industrial Psychology Consultants as the front office administrator and PA to the managing consultant. It is my dream in life to continue learning and pursuing in the Human Resource and administration field and be a big asset/value to any institution which will use my services.

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