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Workforce Diversity, Equity and Inclusion (DEI) celebrating Black History Month

Glad young man with african hairstyle posing with arms crossed in his office with other employees on background. Male manager in blue shirt smiling during conference at workplace..

Organizations can embrace diversity, equity and inclusion in the workplace when they are open to hiring employees from various ethnicities, regardless of race, religion and culture. Recruiting and retaining a diverse pool of talent – especially in Ontario, where more than 200 different cultures are represented-brings various benefits to the organization and its employees.

In this age of globalization, should organizations not focus on ensuring our workforces are just as diverse, equitable and inclusive? As a result, organizations that adopt DEI practices see huge gains in business, innovation, client and employer engagement and a sense of belonging among staff.

Diversity, equity and inclusion have many direct benefits to organizations and companies:

  • Increased productivity
  • Improved creativity
  • Enhance employee engagement
  • Reduced employee turnover
  • Better company reputation
  • A wider range of skills
  • Heightened cultural insights

Due to Canada’s diversity, many new Canadians find the ‘workplace culture’ different from how work was done in their home countries.  Canada brings people from many different ethnic groups together in the workplace and understanding the differences can be confusing.

An organization’s culture is “the way we do things here.”

  • A collection of unwritten rules, codes of behaviour and norms by which people operate.
  • Every workplace has its own culture. Each workplace may be different than what you are used to.
  • The easiest way to determine organizational culture is to do your research, observe the culture and/or ask questions.

Companies ranked as the best employers usually have an excellent organizational culture.  When researching potential job opportunities, explore the websites of the companies you are applying to.  Take the time to read about their vision, mission, and corporate social responsibility programs to understand whether they are a good match/fit for you.

In keeping with the topic of diversity, equity and inclusion, every February, people in Canada are invited to participate in Black History Month festivities and events that honour Black Canadians and their communities’ legacy.

The 2021 theme for Black History Month is: “The Future is Now.”

Here are four ways to celebrate the history of black culture in Canada and to learn more about how Black Canadians have shaped and made invaluable contributions to our country.

  1. Learn how Black History Month came to be recognized in Canada.  Black Canadians and their communities who, throughout history, have done so much to make Canada the culturally diverse, compassionate, and prosperous nation it is today.

  1. Many notable Black individuals have helped shape Canadian heritage and identity and have made and continue to make enormous contributions to all sectors of society in Canada.  Read their biographies here:

  1. Black Canadians have made contributions to all sectors of society well before this country was even called Canada. This overview of documents describes some of the events starting with the first person of African heritage known to have come to what is now, Canada arriving over 400 years ago.

  1. Over the past four centuries, Black Canadians and organizations – especially those led by women – were created to advance equality and human rights. As advocates and catalysts for change, Black women have created many important organizations.

Job Skills strives to embrace diversity, equity and inclusion, and the staff represent many of the clients we serve, identifying more than 20 different ethnicities and 40 other languages and dialects spoken.

Job Skills is here to support you.  To learn more about workplace culture and understand how it can impact employment in the Canadian workforce, register for the ‘Diversity in the Workplace’ online workshop on February 25th.

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