The Hampton Roads Chamber, SIR, and Old Dominion University unveiled the Diversity Dashboard in February 2020.
We kept our initial dashboard simple. We focused on performance: how are we currently doing? We examined performance in four areas: Diversity, Strategy, Accountability, and Influence. The measures are all business-centric.
Diversity is Diverse
This is the most basic of the measures: Do we have different kinds of people working here and living here in the 757.
Although this measure is basic, it is the foundation for any successful diversity and inclusion program for businesses.
Our measures come from the Envision 2020 Regional branding study where residents and business leaders like you answered a question related to how diverse the overall community is.
As Jim noted, we have diversity, and we see it more in the community than in businesses.
Can we move the needle on business diversity to match the community diversity?
Also, are there ways that organizations themselves can assess their internal diversity?
Strategy - Seeing Diversity as a Business Strategy
Diversity and inclusion, let alone equity, do not occur by accident. They occur with intentionality. As we stated, there is diversity when it comes to people in organizations, however, that number increases when a strategy is in place.
If we are going to set an example as a region, individually and collectively, businesses must incorporate diversity with their business goals, objectives, and practices.
Can we move the needle on strategy past 50%?
Accountability - Being Accountable to Diverse Outcomes
In order for a diversity and inclusion strategy to work, there must be some accountability within the organization. Diversity is not just the job of the CEO, HR director, or Chief Diversity Officer although they are a vital part of D&I success. Management throughout an organization must be responsible. Diversity expectations for manages must be clear and managers must be held accountable for diversity performance as well as their performance on productivity, sales, and other areas.
Accountability is currently low.
Can we move the needle on accountability at least up to 30%?
Influence - Influencing Greater Diversity
We are trying to create more than individual business successes. We are trying to create regional success, where diversity is systemic. This requires individual businesses to look beyond their walls to their supply chains and vendors.
We want to support minority- and women-owned businesses and create an eco-system with visible equity throughout.
At 40%, this metric is relatively high by national comparisons.
Let’s see if we can move the needle to 50%!
In summary, we in the 757 are challenging ourselves to excellence in diversity and inclusion, business by business, creating a region that attracts other businesses with the same values and commitment. We do this by being diverse, having a business strategy, holding ourselves accountable, and extending our influence.
This is the starting point. Diversity and inclusion are fluid concepts. Things change, people change, and the metrics will change with them. We will keep core concepts, but more than likely, we will add and/or tailor these concepts to provide a more inclusive view of the subject of diversity and inclusion in business. Wherever we end up, the point is to have a starting point, a place where we can begin to set the stage that the 757 is a diverse and inclusive region, and we are striving for better in the future.
Want more information?
We encourage you to reach out to our Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion Officer by clicking the button below.