It’s hard to believe but the holiday season is almost upon us for another year. Being involved with the Diversity Agenda, we’re sure that you already adopt an inclusive approach to your workplace holiday festivity planning, but here are a some tips to keep in mind to ensure that your kaimahi are all equally included.
Seek input from a wide cross section of employees.
Consult with your staff, or delegate the consultation to a committee comprised of a diverse range of employees. You’re more likely to host an event that everyone feels a part of if it’s led by a good representation of kaimahi who understand and have asked about all considerations.
Lead by example.
During any social events, keep an eye out for kaimahi who aren’t necessarily comfortable in all social settings. Include them in conversations in a way that makes them comfortable, but sets the example for others to break away from their usual social circles. Quieter or more introverted staff may enjoy a relaxed, quiet chat away from any music and other more boisterous activities.
Consider observing days that are significant to other cultures and religions.
Work events should celebrate achievements of your colleagues and bring people together. Christmas isn’t celebrated by everyone, so consider acknowledging other religious holidays (Hanukkah, Bodhi Day etc.) to be inclusive of other beliefs.
Set clear boundaries on any gift-giving initiatives.
The holiday season can be an expensive time of year, with some people really feeling the pinch. Any gift giving initiatives should be on an opt-in basis, and participants should be given clear guidelines on spend limits and other requirements.
Where is the event?
Make sure the venue is accessible for all and that people of all genders are able to use the toilets. Do you need somewhere wheelchair accessible? Do you have vision impaired attendees who require lighting adjustments?
What time is the event?
Lunch time events are more likely to be inclusive of those with commitments outside of standard work hours.
What are we eating?
An easy way to embrace the various cultures of your staff is to organise a ‘bring a plate’ style meal. The bonus is that you get to try delicious food from all over the world. Also: never be afraid to ask for a recipe – doing so is the ultimate compliment to the chef.