Closing Diversity Gaps

Dec 2, 2022

“Workforce diversity relates not only to staff having diverse cultural backgrounds, abilities, genders and ages but also different life experiences, talents, and qualifications. Inclusive workplaces recognise the value of each employee’s strengths, abilities and perspectives.” Disability Action Week , this week, reminds us. 

At Murawin, our core work focuses to support the voice of Indigenous Australian’s being heard, but our passion encompasses supporting broader inclusivity and diversity. Discussing Disability Action Week, the Murawin Team yarned about diversity in our environment and questioned what is ‘majority’, what is ‘different’, and how is privilege of being within majority experienced. We explored our own lived experience of how it feels to be ‘different’, and on the other side of the same coin, how it feels to be interacting with someone perceived as ‘different’. 

The Team acknowledged encountering ‘different’ in any form comes with some feelings of uncertainty or a lack of understanding. At times it can additionally come with unnecessary fear, of misunderstanding, causing offense, or just fear of the gap of difference between our lived experiences. 

Diversity and inclusion works to disperse the fear of this gap, and embrace it as an opportunity to extend our knowledge base, stretch our perspectives, and appreciate alternate talents. Different lived experiences divide us all, but being inclusive we can celebrate this divide, and strive to close the gap that arises from the fear of difference.  

Diversity in the workplace stands to reduce this ‘fear’ gap or discomfort, as we work alongside people different from ourselves and recognise our connections and the value in our opposing strengths.  We can embrace the opportunity diversity brings, as the Australian Indigenous Employment Index states, ‘The diversity, wellbeing and engagement of a company’s workforce can strongly influence the success of a company.’ 

Research shows that businesses with a diversity of employee lived experience, perspectives, backgrounds and knowledge enriches the problem solving processes and work produced. Diversity also grows a culture of inclusivity and open mindedness which narrow employee demographic businesses do not benefit from. 

Murawin is a diverse workplace benefiting from voices of different cultures, genders and ages. As Place Strategists we work with a broad range of built environment clients to consider the perspectives of diversity in their projects. Murawin also work to support a broader range of businesses build capability in diversification through services such as Cultural Awareness Training, Change Management Facilitation and Reconciliation Action Plan Advice. 

Murawin supports the National First Peoples Disability Network who also aim to build diversity and close the gap in First Peoples access to employment and vocational education, specifically First People with a disability. The network prioritises the “development and implementation of programs for inclusive education and employment for First People with a disability in line with national strategies for their full social participation” 

This Disability Action week, come together with colleagues to celebrate by raising awareness of the positives of diversity in the workplace, break down acceptance barriers or misunderstanding and promote inclusion, because together our actions create impact.  

#diversityandinclusion #firstnations #actionnotwords