Construction Inclusion Week 2022 is October 17-21, 2022. This week puts a spotlight on celebrating diversity, equity and inclusion (DE&I) throughout the construction industry with the ultimate goal of promoting change.
There are a couple of goals of Construction Inclusion Week:
- To stand united in setting expectations and promoting consistent behavior.
- To champion inclusion that empowers us to reach our full potential, fueling innovation and connection with our employees, clients and communities we serve.
- To harness and leverage the capabilities and global reach of the construction industry and its affiliates, to cultivate and perpetuate diversity, equity and inclusion.
So why is recognizing Construction Inclusion Week and embracing its goals essential for construction? Because diversity is seriously lacking in the industry. According to the US Bureau of Labor Statistics, the construction industry employs more than 11 million workers but only 11% are women, 7.2% black or African American and 2.1% are Asian. It’s more important than ever to develop DE&I initiatives for your construction company.
What Does DE&I Mean?
DE&I is a concept that broadly outlines the efforts an institution takes to create a more welcoming environment for people of different identities. According to psychologist and DE&I Consultant, Dulce Maria Vega, DE&I is an umbrella term used to describe three distinct concepts:
- Diversity: The range of groups of people in your workforce referring to differences such as race, ethnicity, gender, sexual orientation, physical ability, marital status and so on.
- Equity: Promoting fair processes that provide the same opportunities for all individuals in a company, in other words, providing a level playing field.
- Inclusion: When your employees feel a sense of belonging due to your policies and have the ability to be their true selves.
DE&I efforts can include many different tactics. You can take extra steps in your hiring process to ensure individuals of various races, genders, ages, abilities and sexual orientations are treated equitably when being considered for a position. It could also mean creating career development paths that don’t limit or target advancement to only certain types of people. Or developing mentorship opportunities or buddy networks among diverse individuals.
Why Construction Companies Should Care About DE&I?
There are a lot of reasons why your construction company should care about creating DE&I initiatives that promote an equal and diverse workforce.
Companies with diverse staff, especially on the executive level, can become more productive and profitable. McKinsey studies have shown that companies with more than 30% of women executives were more likely to outperform companies where this percentage ranged from 10 to 30% sometimes by almost half. Companies with racial or cultural diversity outperformed others by up to 36%.
Larger Labor Pool
Today’s tight labor market has made it extremely difficult to recruit enough candidates to fill open positions. Refocusing your recruitment strategy to include underrepresented candidates can help you expand your labor pool. According to Jackson Lewis, DEI policies can be used to create pipelines for recruiting diverse employees and educational and training opportunities (including language or skills training programs) to retain them and advance their careers. Plus a diverse workforce can make a company more attractive to potential employees and also customers.
Diversity in the workplace helps foster innovation, creativity and empathy in ways that homogeneous environments seldom do. The more diverse your workforce, the more opportunities there are for sharing different thoughts and ideas that can improve your processes. It may be said that great minds think alike, but diverse minds think outside of the box, necessary for companies that need to rethink strategies and processes.
Download Resources to Help You Get Started
Construction Inclusion Week provides educational and business resources for the construction industry including office teams, craft and jobsite crews and industry affiliates. The curriculum includes live-streamed content, facilitator tools and more curriculum resources. Construction Inclusion Week also provides a planning guide.
This guide is designed to enable your firm to participate in Construction Inclusion Week 2022 and plan your own internal activities. The materials and resources will bring awareness to diversity, equity and inclusion concepts for job sites, teams, and companies.
Learn more about Construction Inclusion Week 2022 by visiting the website. Learn more about DE&I initiatives by reading:
- What Does Diversity, Equity and Inclusion Mean for Construction Companies?
- Do More Than Celebrate Diversity: Implement a DE&I Plan Now and Reap the Benefits