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Get Started with D&I

Crescendo's Diversity & Inclusion Policy

Our purpose as an organization is to help companies create more inclusive cultures, and we want to lead by example.

Creating an inclusive workplace isn’t easy. Each person on the team needs to care about it and be willing to commit to it. To help us along this journey we’ve created this guide.

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Stefan Kollenberg
Creating Brave Conversations About D&I in the Workplace

Having Brave Conversations About D&I in the Workplace is a Necessity for Success

As HR professionals, we all want to play a role in helping our workplace to improve diversity and inclusion (D&I). But, that can be a difficult task. How do you create an environment where our differences are celebrated? How do you change long-held beliefs and biases?

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Stefan Kollenberg
Finding and Supporting Community Groups

Don’t assume corporate social responsibility (CSR) is nothing more than draining company resources for the sake of being nice; it’s a critical element of building a business.

For example, over 70 percent of millennials - with a combined spending power of $2.45 trillion dollars - will spend more on brands that support causes. Add in the boost to employee morale from CSR, the tax benefits, and the marketing benefits and you’ve got a compelling reason for your company to give back.

So how can a company find and support community groups and nonprofits?

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Stefan Palios
Starting a D&I-Focused Employee Resource Group

Picture the most admired companies in the world, and chances are they have an ERG - or ten. Sometimes that goal is social and fun, such as an ERG for vegans in the office. More commonly, though, ERGs create space for employees of underrepresented identity groups, such as LGBTQ+ people, women, or people of colour.

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Respect in the Workplace - Sample Policy

Crescendo disclaimer: This policy is for example purposes only. It may not meet the needs of your organization due to jurisdictional or other legal framework differences. Any adoption of this policy should include a review from any relevant parties to your organization’s circumstances.

Commentary is underlined to offer context on some sections and can be deleted in the final product. All text within [square brackets] is intended to be replaced with your company name as stated within the bracket.

The sections in this sample policy are as follows:

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Inclusion Guideline: Hiring Process

Hiring can be overwhelming, and when you have the added goal of hiring diversely, it can be hard to know where to start. It may be tempting to limit yourself to who happens to apply to your job, or to skim applications based on traditional measures like a degree from a top university. Unfortunately, that’s also a fast track to a homogeneous team.

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Inclusion Guideline: Product Development

Building for inclusion is fundamentally about ensuring the maximum number of people possible can use your product.

Add in the fact that marginalized communities have huge buying power - for example Americans with disabilities alone have $175 billion dollars in discretionary spending and global LGBTQ+ buying power is estimated at over $1 trillion dollars - building inclusive products has a direct revenue connection.

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How to Support Parents at Work

You’re likely already employing parents. Millennials are now in the 22-36 age range, and while it is true that many are delaying parenthood, these remain the most common years to start a family. Good policies will enable you to retain top performers through this life phase. Parents are skilled prioritizers, and many of them claim to be even more productive in their work than they were prior to parenthood. Supporting parents doesn’t have to be difficult or expensive, and great policies can help you stand out from the pack as an employer of choice.

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How to Research and Implement D&I Metrics

Once you get past diversity and inclusion basics, the next step is all about finding what works in your organization. This means you need high quality diversity and inclusion (D&I) metrics - ones that help with eliminating researcher bias - so you can track progress over time.

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How to Build the Business Case for D&I at your Company

Diversity and inclusion is about a lot of things, chief among them creating work environments where all types of people are welcome and can thrive. Said another way, it’s about creating a work environment optimized for sourcing talent and increasing productivity.

When asking for money, resources, or even just executive support (which means asking for their time) for your diversity and inclusion strategy, be aware that you are competing against other corporate initiatives asking for resources. It may not be fair – buying new pens with logos on them can hardly feel comparative to a D&I program – but it’s the reality of budgets.

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29 D&I Measurement Tools and Technologies

So, you’ve decided to embark on the journey of creating a diverse and inclusive organization - but where do you start? Knowing which strategies to implement can be daunting, as can figuring which organizational actions will be or have been effective. At the same time, how do you create an approach that is specifically and uniquely tailored to your organization?

To help answer some of these questions, we have compiled a list of measurement tools that can help in various areas of your particular diversity and inclusion program.

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25 Toronto Diversity and Inclusion Organizations You Can Support

In keeping with the title of most diverse city in the world, Toronto has many organizations working to fight injustice, discrimination, and build community for under-served groups. Each group on this list has a unique angle or way of working to support its community.

The organizations listed here are by no means exhaustive, nor does this list imply they are the only ones doing the work they do. The vast network of organizations in the city often collaborate, helping in many different ways that contribute to change over time. Crescendo highlighted a few organizations doing interesting, impactful work in the following communities:

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Inclusion Guideline: Manager 1-on-1s

1-on-1 meetings may be the most important time spent in a company. Not only are they times to share experiences and deliver critical feedback, they are a key driver in reduced turnover and higher employee engagement. Managers also become better leaders because they learn about different employee work styles and how to motivate different types of people. Combine that with the revenue jump that inclusive organizations enjoy and the case is clear: inclusive 1-on-1’s need to be a business priority.

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Does Your Company Have a Diversity and Inclusion Problem?

More studies on diversity and inclusion are published seemingly every week, each discussing its benefits and fallbacks with intensity. To the D&I practitioner, this can seem like a great thing - visibility and data for the cause is suddenly everywhere.

However, this is a double edged sword for people hoping to start inclusion initiatives in their business. While there’s visibility, it’s easy for detractors to say D&I is just a fad.

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Diversity & Inclusion Activities To Do With Your Team

Instead of starting with the intent to “have an activity about D&I,” thoughtful leaders and diversity champions should begin with the end in mind. Set the goal of activities to be both increased interpersonal understanding and increased awareness of invisible things like privilege, not either / or, in order to get the most from your time with the fewest possible side effects.

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