“Culture is the drum beat that keeps everything in sync”

3 MIN READ

“Culture is a living thing. It’s always changing. It’s always evolving, so it requires active involvement and cultivation. It’s not a list you check off or something you set and forget, it’s continually maintained. Culture is your compass. It gives you general guidelines, so you know where your North is.”

— Nathan Hall, CEO of Culture Check

Do you know where your North is?  

Nathan Hall uses his experience cultivating a healthy and inclusive workplace to help other organizations.  

After his own experience with toxic company culture, Nathan knew he wanted to teach others how to foster inclusive spaces. As the CEO of Culture Check, an anti-racism support centre for the workforce, Nathan works with businesses across the private and public sector to provide support, education, and best practices to address racial discrimination in the workplace.  

During his presentation at GenNext Amplify, Nathan highlighted four tips your business or organization can implement today to create a vibrant and inclusive workplace. 

1. Listen and access the situation.

By having an ear to the ground and communicating with stakeholders, whether that’s employees or clients, you can better understand the needs of your organization and the needs of your consumer. These insights will drive the changes you make to your company culture.    

2. Define your organization's values and document them.

Make sure your employees and stakeholders are on the same page. Whether it’s about the tone of your social media posts or the way you develop brand guidelines, make the time to ensure you know what your organization stands for 

3. Take stock of progress and areas for improvement.

Beyond assessing the progress of employees, look at what programs and resources are in place to support staff and gauge whether those supports are effective or not. If an employee is unhappy in their position, it affects the whole team. Where is there room for improvement? Are employees using the resources available to them? Why or why not? Consider if a move or change within your team will be the best decision for everyone involved. 

4. Create accountability.

According to Culture Check, 84 per cent of Black, Indigenous, and People of Colour have experienced racism in the workplace. 

To create a more inclusive workplace, it’s important that you make defining behaviours a priority, communicate your expectations clearly, and put systems in place to keep both employees and employers accountable for their actions. 

Everyone has the right to a safe workplace.

Through the United for All coalition, United Way East Ontario has been working to address the issues of hate, racism, and discrimination in our communities with the long-term goal of building social resilience, advocacy, research, and institutional change.  

Cultivating organizational culture that recognizes the diverse needs of employees and creates a space for open, honest, and inclusive conversations is an important step in the fight against systemic racism, bigotry, hate, and exclusion. 

“Culture is the drum beat that keeps everything in sync. It’s the commitment an organization makes to its employees,” Nathan says. It’s time we commit to change because for a company to truly be great, it must be great for everyone.  

Watch Nathan’s full presentation below and learn more about his work with Culture Check at culturecheck.com. 

Paving the way to inclusive employment

Did you know GenNext East Ontario works to strengthen programs and initiatives that help often under-represented people find employmentLearn more about our work to progress Equitable Employment and join us in making difference today. 

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