Next month marks Black History Month in the UK, and while conversations around diversity, equality and inclusion received more attention over the last year, now is a perfect time to continue that conversation and focus on initiatives that can spark real change.

A recent Glassdoor study found that more than two thirds of job seekers are taking a hard look at workplace diversity when considering employment opportunities. Lucid is partnering with GRBN to measure, benchmark and report on how the mindset of employees in the market research industry compares across the globe.

For an industry whose output often has a global impact on the products, businesses and services released to the market, it’s even more critical that all research and insights professionals feel seen, heard and represented, and market research as a whole embraces diversity, equality and inclusion at its core. The global research project that will be released this winter will highlight areas of opportunity to focus on in the future, but we already know that there’s work to be done now. To start:

  • Get involved with Industry bodies taking action. The Market Research Society asks CEOs to make five commitments towards creating safer and more representative workplaces as part of their Inclusion Pledge. The pledge includes: publishing pay statistics annually, working towards government targets for women and ethnic minorities at board level and improving recruitment practices.

Beyond major industry bodies, new organizations dedicated to engaging a global community are cropping up and driving initiatives to specifically improve diversity and inclusion in the research and insights industry. ThinkNow in the US just recently released new standards to modernise the survey qualification questions. In the UK, the Colour of Research (CORe) has recently launched to advocate for the inclusion of ethnic professionals in the market research industry.

  • Rethink recruitment practices. Changing recruitment practices may be difficult to implement overnight, but is necessary for progress. To start, recruit talent from a variety of sources. Don’t just source candidates from traditional graduate programs – look at job boards created for underrepresented communities or simply encourage colleagues from diverse backgrounds to share opportunities in their circles.

Assess what perspectives or skills are currently missing on your teams and seek to add diverse skill sets, mindsets, and experiences. The unique backgrounds of our teams at Lucid are bringing diverse thinking, enabling more creative solutions for clients and helping us build a more inclusive work environment. It’s been vital for making our business stronger, and it will do the same for others.

Bake DE&I into workplace culture. Organisations must consciously act on opportunities that not only promote diversity and inclusion, but that also recognise and support the mental health and wellbeing of our teams — then they must ingrain those practices into the very foundation of workplace culture.

Revenue will always matter, but success in today’s business world is also being driven by values, fairness, and the greater good. Those who support employees in their endeavours, recognise the importance of  work / life balance, and create ways for individuals to feel as though they are truly a welcome member of the team, will be most successful.

Ben Hogg, MD of International at Lucid