Ask “What’s One Thing I Could Do to Better Support You?” and Other Actions for Allies

Each week, we share five simple actions to create a more inclusive workplace and be a better ally.

Image for post
Image for post
Photo of woman in front of laptop, courtesy of WOCinTechChat.com

1. Ask “What’s One Thing I Could Do to Better Support You?”

So, if your company wins such an award, offer to meet one-on-one with employees from that group to hear about their experience.

During the meeting, acknowledge that while the company did just win this award, there’s probably more work to do to create a truly inclusive culture. Then ask, “What’s one thing I could be doing differently to better support you, or to create a more inclusive workplace?”

And, based on this insight, take action.

2. Join remote meetings two minutes early

One of our favorite tips? Dial into remote meetings a few minutes early. The pre-meeting banter can help build relationships, particularly with people outside of our usual (and typically homogeneous) network.

Give it a try!

3. Put pronouns on your name tag, especially if you’re cisgender

Need a refresher on the definition of “cisgender?” It means a person is not transgender; that one’s gender identity (or internal sense of self) aligns, according to societal expectations, with the sex one was assigned at birth.

4. If you see the “only” asked to take notes, speak up

After the meeting, two people came up to her. One was a customer, who said, “You know, I hate getting picked to take minutes or notes, but I can’t imagine what that feels like when you’re the only woman in the room.” The other was a co-worker who said, “I am so sorry. I just…I can’t believe that happened. I didn’t know what to do. I’m so sorry.”

Really?

Here’s a pro-tip for allies. If you see the only woman or the only person of color asked to take notes, speak up. Heck, volunteer to take them yourself.

5. Download the Better Allies book club discussion guide

We have a discussion guide for Better Allies: Everyday Actions to Create Inclusive, Engaging Workplaces to get you started.

Download the guide here.

Being an ally is a journey. Want to join us?

Together, we can — and will — make a difference with the Better Allies™ approach.

Written by

Everyday actions to create inclusive, engaging workplaces. Together, we can — and will — make a difference with the Better Allies® approach.

Get the Medium app

A button that says 'Download on the App Store', and if clicked it will lead you to the iOS App store
A button that says 'Get it on, Google Play', and if clicked it will lead you to the Google Play store