How to Determine a Workplace’s DE&I Value

There are numerous factors in the workplace that may prevent individuals from being able to express their Asian American Pacific Islander identity. To help guide individuals through this process, the UConn Center for Career Development and Asian American Cultural Center hosted an event on April 13. Here are some Diversity, Equity & Inclusion (DE&I) red flags, green flags, and questions to ask!

First, we’re going to discuss some DE&I red flags to look out for in the workplace. One way to understand if your company or organization values diversity, equity, and inclusion – is to ask about the investments made towards the initiatives. Low investments for DE&I initiatives, including capital and financial aspects, may determine where the company’s values lie. Another red flag to look out for is the diversity on the leadership team. Those on the leadership team include the company’s policy setters, culture designers, and decision makers. This group of individuals should show a diverse group of people, to represent the community of the workplace. In fact, diverse teams are known to be 87% better at making decisions for the company.

Next, we’re going to discuss some green flags to look out for in the workplace. As mentioned above, a diverse and inclusive leadership team is important. The company’s leadership team should be representative of their community. Another thing to look out for is if these leaders ask for your feedback. Being interested in how to better the company’s culture and inclusivity is a powerful green flag. A third aspect to notice is how toxic/discriminatory behavior is handled. This should not be tolerated or accepted by anyone – no matter the position. Overall – diversity, equity, and inclusion should be prioritized through the organization’s actions.

Here are some questions you can ask during your interview, to understand the amount of diversity, equity, and inclusion within the company.

  • How do you work to create and design an all inclusive community?
  • Are there any anti-discrimination training available for workers?
  • How do you ensure that all the individuals in a meeting feel equally included?

At the “Embracing Your AAPI Identity in the Workplace Event” speakers shared additional advice such as build a strong community in whatever workplace you end up, don’t be afraid to ask questions and get out of your comfort zone (create a powerful image), and incorporate what you learn from UConn into your future career, especially from AAPI related clubs and organizations

After reading this blog post, you should now have beneficial information regarding the diversity, equity, and inclusion of your workplace. Stay connected with the Center for Career Development to learn more about resources to help you determine a workplace’s DE&I value.

Photo by Charlotte May:

By Briana Phouadara
Briana Phouadara