DTUI.com Organizational Inclusion Assessment Tool

Identifying Cultural Competence Gaps

Organizational Inclusion Assessment

People are talking more about appreciating human differences as demographic changes and global migrationOIA Toolkit increase diversity in our lives. People in the United States focus on “why we can’t get along,” while Europeans stress linking cultural differences to stimulating the economy, and Asia concerns itself with accommodating guest workers. In either case, everyone will agree that the more a link is made between diversity and productivity, the more everyone will benefit. Presumably, an organization in which each employee brings his or her full self in the service of productivity will have a competitive edge. This means in practice that:
  • An muslim employee can pray comfortably during work hours.
  • A Latino male who can leave work to take his pregnant wife to the medical doctor for each visit is another example.
  • A gay person who can wear makeup to work is yet another example. Employers are understandably concerned about how much valuing differences will either pay off or create barriers for the organizations.

They are no longer accepting the assumption that diversity will pay off. In fact, there are many examples that it does not. How many organizations have found that diversity leads to unanticipated problems, such as interpersonal conflict, fear of litigation, and language barriers. Human capital assessment identifies what is needed to increase productivity and to capitalize off diversity.

Diversity professionals now have tools available that enable you to analyze the relationship among human capital, diversity, and return on investment. The key is to identify those that both the present stage of inclusion and simultaneously isolate the corresponding cultural competence gaps to design and develop high impact diversity education.

The things you need to keep in mind to strategically use assessment tools:

  1. Focus on measuring the impact of diversity on processes by considering the human capital needed to impact those processes (e.g., the attitude, knowledge, and skills needed to work productively).
  2. Link assessment with the organization’s vision and mission.
  3. Include ways to identify performance gaps that should be addressed to increase productivity.
  4. Establish a benchmark to compare performance with a standard.
  5. Use assessment results to recognize performance that should be rewarded, and used as best practice examples.
  6. Collect data that can be used to make decisions about resource allocations, projections, and scheduling.
  7. Consider diversity as human capital in the assessment by measuring valued attitudes (e.g., appreciates differences among fellow employees), knowledge (e.g., understands the needs of a diverse client group), and skills (e.g., works effectively with employees across different groups).
  8. Separate out non human capital factors, such as pay and benefits, in measuring the bottom line.
  9. Tailor the assessment to focus on the bottom line (e.g., sales, service, teamwork, retention, etc.).
  10. Use both qualitative and quantitative measurements. The numerical data will provide a simple, general picture of the organization’s human capital as it relates to diversity. The qualitative data will offer specific examples needed to explain the quantitative results.

A full organizational assessment determines the extent that the organizational culture is inclusive and existing cultural competency gaps. Most professionals conduct a few focus groups or key informant interviews to assess an organization’s climate of inclusion. One reason for this limited approach is the relatively recent availability of tools that can precisely measure an organization’s intercultural competency development needs. In addition, it is relatively recent that knowledge about how to adequately measure inclusion has been available. The result is that many professionals either do not measure inclusion at all before developing an invention, such as training, or they rely on poor measures. It is no wonder that many training and workshop participants complain that the training they receive is not useful in their everyday work lives. The Organizational Inclusion Assessment approach offers everything the professional needs to overcome the challenges of organizational inclusion assessment. Identifying cultural competence gaps is the key.

A Stage Approach to Organizational Inclusion Assessment

Understanding an organization’s culture with respect to diversity and inclusion is essential to promoting change. DTUI.com uses an approach to organizational culture assessment that focuses on determining the developmental stage of organizational inclusion and cultural competence gap analysis. This information offers a mirror into the organization’s specific needs related to promoting desired change. It is based on the assumptions that:

  • Change is a process.
  • Progress occurs in stages.
  • Change occurs in a spiral, rather than linear manner-the organization goes through valleys and mountains in reaching its goals.
  • Organizations must assess its current inclusion stage and preparedness for change.

Stages of Inclusion

Many organizations spend considerable resources on intensive employee diversity training without organization change results. An organization all too often takes on the challenge of organizational change without awareness of the pitfalls. DTUI.com uses a developmental stage model to identify interventions to promote inclusion. Competencies needed to move an organization from its current stage to the next are identified, along with general recommendations for interventions is made for each stage.

The following five stages of inclusion characterize an organization’s development towards inclusion, and the intercultural competencies and interventions for each.

    1. Conventional (Stage 1): The primary view of an organization in this stage is that only those who fit into the traditional norms and values will succeed. 
    2. Defensive (Stage 2): The leadership understands that the organization must work to make others feel included, but continue to resist changing the culture. 
    3. Ambivalent (Stage 3): The Ambivalent stage is present when HEGs represent 15% to 25% of the institution’s population and diversity best practices are being put into place to include them.
    4. Egalitarian (Stage 4): Cultural differences are embraced yet there is resistance against putting efforts into make further changes to create a level playing field. 
    5. Integrative (Stage 5): The high performing organization actively includes and utilizes the wide range of skills and perspectives of its identity groups. There is fairness and equity in the organization that promotes diversity with little effort.

In summary, the change is from consciously excluding differences to making differences a way of life in organizations while harnessing them in the service of productivity. In which stage is your organization? An organization must assess which of the stages of inclusion it is presently to understand its culture and gain insights into how to intervene in order to reach higher stages.

DTUI.com uses several methods in assessing an organization’s level of inclusion and corresponding cultural competence gaps. We look over existing documentation (referred to as Archival Research), such as any strategic diversity initiative documents, employee policies and procedures, and information about the organization. Individual interviews with management and the leadership, as well as focus group interviews with other groups of employees provide insights into differences in perception of organizational inclusion among groups. We also offer an organizational inclusion survey to provide opportunities to reach large groups of people in a cost effect way and a quantitative measure. The use of all three is recommended to provide significant insights into the organization’s needs.

Assessing the Organization’s Current Stage

Assessing the organization’s current stage requires:

  • A survey of as many employees as possible.
  • Interviews with Key Informants (Leadership, management, and stakeholders).
  • Focus groups with members of various departments and units within the organization.

Organizations can benefit from reaching higher developmental stages of inclusion. Assessment provides insight into the institution’s culture in order to understand how to reach higher inclusion stages. DTUI.com uses several data collection tools to assess an institution’s current level of inclusion. The following methods are used:

  • Archival Method.
  • Key Informant Interview.
  • Focus Group Interview.
  • Survey.

Archival research involves analyzing existing documentation, such as annual reports, employee policies and procedures, manuals, training, resources, advertisements, etc. Individual interviews with management and the leadership (referred to as Key Informant Interviews), as well as Focus Group interviews with identity groups, provide data that enable us to assess differences in perception of inclusion among groups within an institution.

Key Informant Interviews include interviews the management, diversity pioneers (i.e., those who are known to champion inclusion within the organization), leadership, diversity steering committee members, as well as any other individuals who are considered to have information that will enrich our understanding of the inclusion challenges and successes.DTUI uses its own Organizational Inclusion Assessment (OIA) toolkit, which includes a survey, Key Informant Interview forms, Archival research forms, and Focus Group Interview items. Data from all four methods converge in determining the overall stage of inclusion an organization is currently in.

The Organizational Inclusion Assessment Identifies Cultural Competency Gaps 

The cultural competency gap analysis is performed using the organizational inclusion assessment data. Our technique offer a unique way to show how the data from different sources converge isolate gaps associated with the awareness, attitude, knowledge, and skills cultural competence components. This enables us to pinpoint the specific component competencies that are targeted for training. In this way, the resulting training is high impact.

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