June was Pride Month and the subject of Diversity & Inclusion has been high on everyone’s radar. For small businesses, however, ESG and Diversity & Inclusion can be a challenging subject. For one, smaller employee numbers often mean that it’s not always comfortable for people to speak up and share their experiences and concerns, especially since quite often it may be just the one person in the company belonging to or representing a certain group. Moreover, many, if not most, small businesses do not necessarily have a dedicated HR person to plan and implement D&I-related policies — that also means that employees quite often don’t know whom to turn to if they want to discuss anything related to this topic.

Getting started with a D&I policy, however, does not need to be very complicated. We have compiled a short list of simple steps that can help you get started (or continue) with your D&I journey.

1. Pronouns in signatures

Perhaps the simplest policy to implement is revamping company signatures to include gender pronouns. Signatures can go a long way in breaking down assumptions and it’s probably the easiest way for employees to state their preference without having to make a big deal out of it. They can also be helpful even in cases someone’s name does not necessarily give away their gender regardless of whether they are part of the LGBTQ+ community.

2. Floating Holidays

Floating holidays are an important step for organisations to make their employees feel included and allow them to take time off for occasions that are important to them depending on their culture, background and traditions. All you need to do is designate several days per year, and employees can take time off to celebrate holidays depending on their culture.

3. Create a D&I channel

Create a D&I channel or chat where people can give you feedback or express their ideas on D&I matters. In getting feedback it’s also important to come up with ways employees can voice their ideas/concerns anonymously. This can be as simple as a suggestion box in the office for people to drop notes into or an online solution like SurveyMonkey and Incogneato.

4. Dedicated person:

If possible, it’s always good to have a dedicated person whom employees can talk to about D&I. Implementing policies without having a point of contact for ideas and concerns can feel impersonal or confusing for such sensitive subjects, so the more channels of communication you can set up, the better.

For more improvement suggestions on the social aspect of ESG, you can sign up with Eevery for a Free Trial*. Once you measure your performance, you will get suggested improvements directly on the platform to get you started on your ESG journey. Find out more.


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