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What are your best tips for building an inclusive business culture?

Hey everyone!

 

Last week, the Square team in the UK got to visit Fair Shot, a social enterprise cafe in London who are transforming the lives of young adults with learning disabilities with their on-the-job training program

 

The visit gave us a lot of food for thought, and we’d love to learn:

 

What are your best tips for building an inclusive business culture?

 

 

Looking forward to reading all your replies!

Tra | she/her
Community Engagement Program Manager, Square
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Try to get into local markets with any baking, coffee, etc. Exposure is critical 

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Sometimes being Inclusive can be as simple as being a safe place. We are a locally owned FEC that employs a lot of young people, and our staffing changes frequently as is the nature with younger staffing. Creating an environment where it is understood that all are welcome, supported, and treated fairly will create your culture of inclusivity. And when you have good workers who feel safe you can solidify your place in a community as somewhere that young adults (and parents of young adults) want to work! 

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That's a good one.

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Square Champion

@megs83 Totally agree! This has been a high value of ours since Day 1. And while it's incredibly simple, it's not always easy. I'm super thankful for the opportunities we've had to learn and grow in this area along the way. We similarly tend to have a young team (especially in the Front of House), but one of the things I'm most proud of is the diversity that our team and customer base represent -- people of all identities know they're welcome, and our team members feel safe to be who they are.

Michelle Savage
Co-Founder & President
Savage Goods | @savagegoods | savagegoods.com
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We have gender neutral restrooms, signage about inclusivity and diversity and we try to be visible as LGBTQ+ owners. Daphne is currently in a wheelchair due to GBS and we find that a lot of places claim to be accessible and are not which is the opposite of inclusion and we are way more aware of that than we used to be in our space. We dropped many requirements to work here and have honest conversations about learning on the job instead of creating a barrier to entry.

Deklan (Dex) they/them]

MudFire CEO | Square enthusiast

Visit me at MudFire online
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Great question.   Basically, never look at a person as a part of a group, ie., color, gender, ideology, etc., but only see the individual as who they are and welcome them into the life of your business, whether a customer or employee.  Each person is unique and valued and brings solutions to the table only they can bring.  Exteriors mean nothing; hearts mean everything.

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This may sound a little silly, but answering the phone! Many businesses local to me have you conduct all your orders and appointments online or in an app. I can imagine that is pretty frustrating for people who are less tech-savvy or have visual impairments. While I would prefer everyone book online with us, I am very accommodating at booking people over the phone when they call to continue to provide the best service.

UV-Free Tanning Salon Owner, Northern California (Campbell)
Square Champion - Expert
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I love this, @Bronze_Palms! I think there are so many little things -- like only having online booking -- that feel so normal/common these days, that it's easy to forget that not everyone has the same level of comfort or access to the internet, smartphones, etc. And that something as simple as not having a way to call would make a business not feel inclusive. Sometimes it's the little things (like simply answering the phone!) that make such a huge difference. Great reminder!

Michelle Savage
Co-Founder & President
Savage Goods | @savagegoods | savagegoods.com
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