This month we’ll consider how to manage a multi-faith workplace. It’s not a new topic. Changing demographics mean this has been an issue in the workforce for as long as business has operated. What’s different in 2018 is the employee expectation.
We are now part of a culture which has placed a strong emphasis on the freedom to choose – not just for goods and services, but the freedom to choose our value systems, beliefs and lifestyle. We are more open about our beliefs and affiliations. This type of workforce diversity is both ethically correct and economically beneficial. Diverse teams are more productive teams.
How to manage multi-faith workplaces
There are a few drivers behind these changes. Growth in immigration has brought a wider range of religious beliefs and practices, and what might be called faith activity generally into UK workplaces. Our own data shows six in ten of our jobseekers consider themselves to have a faith. The largest proportion are Christians, with Hindu, Muslim, Sikh, Judaism, Taoism and Buddhism also making an appearance in the list. Our workforce is diverse, so must be the place where they do their work – and often spend large amounts of their days.
Recruiting staff from a broader range of ethnic and religious origins and beliefs means updating operating practices. And considering generational differences. Those with convinced religious positions are likely to ask themselves how their faith relates to the work they are doing and the values of the organisation. So how does your business match up on fairness and principle? It’s not about adhering to any creed other than your won (apart from the law, obviously). But, does your business live and breathe its own principles? Can your employees believe in you?
Multi-faith workplaces in practice
There are also more practical ways for employers to respond to their staff’s spiritual needs. Quiet rooms for religious contemplation are no longer confined to chapels at airports and hospitals – they are increasingly found in the workplace. These should be provided without preference for one religion over another, and y employee that needs time for quiet thought will appreciate the space.
This is important because strong moral and worker satisfaction spreads across a business. It is higher productivity. And better customer service. The opposite is also true. Job performance can suffer if a worker’s emotional well-being is neglected. Caring for your staff means caring for their physical and spiritual health. And we believe that when you look after your staff, your business will look after itself. Find out more on transforming equality and diversity in your business with VERCIDA now.