Inclusive leaders are critical to success. They unlock individual potential, enhance the collective power of teams, and support your organization’s ability to innovate and grow.
Netwomen.co has an inclusive leadership program where we explore intersectionality, inclusion and equality in a non-judgmental safe space.
We provide support for building increased awareness, critical thinking, and application of inclusive leadership.
What specific characteristics allow Inclusive Leaders to be successful? In this blog we will outline Deloitte’s report: The six signature traits of inclusive leadership.
So without further ado, here are the 6 Cs of Inclusive Leaders!
Because different ideas and experiences enable growth.
An inclusive leader is open, great at taking in other perspectives and can cope with ambiguity. What’s the one attribute CEOs need to succeed in the future? “I would place my bet on curiosity,” responded Michael Dell, chairman and chief executive officer of Dell Inc., in a 2015 interview. “Because with curiosity comes learning and new ideas, and in businesses that are changing very rapidly, if you’re not curious, you’re not learning, and you’re going to have a real problem.”
Because not everyone sees the world through the same cultural frame.
You must have the drive, the knowledge and the adaptability to be an inclusive leader. The ability to function effectively in different cultural settings is about more than just knowing about different cultures. Inclusive leaders also recognise how their own culture and stereotypes can influence their expectations of others.
Bp’s As Majajas puts it, “It’s about being flexible but authentic. I think a more inclusive leader is someone who knows when to adapt and doesn’t necessarily need to change who they are fundamentally.”
Staying the course is hard
Your personal values and belief in the business case must be strong.
Being inclusive of diversity is a big challenge. It takes time and energy, two of a leader’s most precious commodities.
Having a netwomen membership- corporate or individual- will help you stay on track and motivated with the knowledge and support from our community.
Here is an example how Belinda Hutchinson, chancellor of the University of Sydney, stays committed to the cause: “It’s about giving people the opportunity to achieve what they should be able to achieve. It doesn’t just relate to gender. It relates to race, religion, sexual preference—whatever else it may be.”
Because a diverse-thinking team is greater than anything else
Use your voice and encourage others to shine!
“The new IQ is based more on group intelligence,” says Bruce Stewart, acting director, strategic initiatives, US Office of Personnel Management. “The old IQ is about how smart you are; the new IQ is about how smart you make your team. If you take it to heart, it will change the way you lead. Instead of the leader leading from top of the pyramid, they lead from the middle of the circle.”
Because talking about imperfection takes personal risk-taking
Practise humility- Admitting mistakes; learning from criticism and different points of view; acknowledging and seeking contributions of others to overcome one’s limitations. Practise this with bravery.
According to Sodexo’s Anand, “Those [leaders] who lack the self-awareness and humility to learn and admit they don’t know everything—these would be leaders who miss an opportunity to learn, and who will be blindsided if they are not careful.”
Because bias is a leader’s downfall.
Self-regulate, reflect and always be fair.
Acknowledge that your organization, despite best intentions, have unconscious bias, and put in place policies, processes, and structures in order to mitigate the unconscious bias that exists.
Find these tips helpful?
In our Inclusive Leadership Program, We teach how to implement these tools and more. To learn more about our program and how to get involved, click here: