KONUX Blog

DEI Featurette – Victor’s Story

22.05.2024

KONUX’s commitment to fresh ideas is key to our innovation strategy. In this interview, we delve into the insights of Victor, whose career journey from India to Germany has enriched his understanding of Diversity, Equity and Inclusion (DEI) in the workplace. With over twenty years across various sectors, Victor has observed the evolution of DEI practices and their integration into corporate culture. He shares the challenges and advancements he has seen, particularly his advocacy for the LGBTQ+ community and practical advice for organizations aiming to enhance their strategies. Join us to gain perspective from Victor’s experiences, as he highlights the importance of commitment to DEI at all organizational levels.

Victor, Sr. Talent Acquisition Specialist

Can you describe your journey from India to Germany and how it has shaped your views on workplace diversity?

Victor: When I started my career 20 years ago, discussions about DEI (Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion) were rare. Although the concept existed, it was not effectively implemented due to various challenges in policy application within HR departments. Throughout my experience, many companies rarely addressed DEI, and there was a visible preference for limiting the scope of DEI issues within their strategies. Prejudices based on nationality, race, gender, age, and sexual orientation were common, especially during the hiring process. This often resulted in low employee engagement and high turnover rates, as employees faced unfair treatment, unequal pay, and limited career opportunities. Despite having strong policies in some organizations, the lack of real commitment to DEI made these policies ineffective. Over the past six to seven years, social media has played a crucial role in increasing DEI awareness, leading to more inclusive and diverse workplaces. My experiences have reinforced my belief that promoting diversity and inclusion in the workplace is not only the right thing to do but is also crucial for creating positive and impactful work environments.

 

Why is diversity, equity, and inclusion important to you personally?

Victor: Diversity enriches my life by allowing me to interact with people from various backgrounds, including different social, ethnic origins, genders, and sexual orientations. Equity ensures that everyone receives the resources they need to succeed, and inclusion fosters a sense of belonging. I advocate for transparency on social media to discuss how organizations support these values.

What specific changes would you like to see in the recruitment industry to better support the LGBTQ+ community?

Victor: I believe it is essential to use inclusive language that welcomes and respects individuals from the LGBTQ+ community. To prevent discrimination, it’s important to train recruiters and hiring managers. I recall an incident where a hiring manager rejected a candidate simply for being queer. Organizations should maintain transparency on social media to show their support for the LGBTQ+ community and the opportunities they provide.

 

What is one key practice you think all companies should adopt to enhance diversity and inclusion?

Victor: A critical practice is to address unconscious biases that can affect decision-making, hiring processes, and daily interactions, often leading to unintentional discrimination. Providing training to raise awareness about these biases can help employees recognize and mitigate them, leading to a more inclusive and equitable workplace.

 

What advice would you give to companies looking to improve their diversity and inclusion strategies?

Victor: Companies should define measurable and achievable diversity and inclusion goals that align with their values and business objectives. Regular training on diversity and inclusion is essential to increase awareness, foster understanding, and combat unconscious biases. It’s important to encourage open and honest communication and actively listen to employee feedback. Ensuring that senior leadership is committed to and visibly supports diversity and inclusion efforts is crucial for fostering a truly inclusive environment.


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