A more diverse business world is a more effective and more lucrative one. Check out the big changes happening in inclusive entrepreneurship.
In a statistic that's as disappointing as it is unsurprising, over 70% of corporate leaders in Fortune 500 companies are white men.
In better news, however.
The number of female CEOs within those Fortune 500 companies has never been higher than it is right now.
What's the takeaway here?
But what is inclusive entrepreneurship, and how can you be an agent of change for your company? And what emerging trends show that women and men of color are beginning to get their due?
Read on to find out.
What Is Inclusive Entrepreneurship?
Before we look into emerging trends and offer advice on how to advocate for yourself and other people of color, let's first make sure we're operating under the same working definition of inclusive entrepreneurship.
In a nutshell, inclusive entrepreneurship is about ensuring that people from all walks of life, regardless of their race, ethnicity, financial situation, educational background, gender, disability, or any other under-represented and under-served demographics, have access to the same entrepreneurial opportunities as the privileged few.
The idea is to put everyone at the same place on the starting line and eliminate the unfair advantage that is often inherited by others as a result of their high financial standing, family connections, gender, skin color, and more.
Entrepreneurship that is inclusive seeks out more diverse leadership and employees and seeks to place minorities in positions of power.
In addition to empowering under-represented communities at the corporate level, inclusive entrepreneurship also seeks to find talent earlier, and nurture it at the educational level as well.
The types of causes, target market, and even the products/services created themselves, maybe also be geared towards serving these under-represented communities.
Recent Trends In Inclusive Entrepreneurship
Now that you have a better understanding of how this type of entrepreneurship works; let's take a look at some of the most common trends in inclusive entrepreneurship.
This year especially, the main focus has been on earlier identification and nurturing of talent.
Corporations and start-ups alike have been giving seminars to students at both the high school and college level.
These seminars not only seek to identify talent, but they also work to create more opportunities in the business world earlier than ever for underserved communities. These courses teach students the basics of entrepreneurship, help them connect with internship opportunities, and educate them about how to find funding.
We also see this kind of entrepreneurship beginning to explode on a global level.
Countries like Greece, Slovakia, Germany, Italy, and even Hungary have all been noted in the past year. Interestingly, many European policies also focus on youth empowerment.
Finally, you should also expect to see more "boots on the ground" actions this year when it comes to inclusive entrepreneurship.
Those in positions of power, especially those that have come from underserved backgrounds, are now traveling to communities in need to speak directly with the people that live there.
They host workshops, help those communities to identify potential entrepreneurial opportunities, and give their time and money to ensure that these communities can find ways to support themselves.
How To Advocate For A More Inclusive Workplace
If you're struggling to make your workplace more inclusive, or if you're just uncomfortable with the lack of diversity in your office, we know it can be a challenge.
You want to be able to make a change, but you're afraid about how you'll be perceived. You might even worry that speaking up about a need for diversity could end up costing you your job.
Luckily, there are ways, both at the leadership level and at within lower-tiered positions, to be an agent for change.
And, with people of color making up one-third of the workforce today, change is coming already.
Switch Up Meeting Leadership
Have you noticed that it seems like only the same types of people are running your meetings every time -- and that they lack a broad range of perspectives?
Why not change up the people leading meetings?
Not only will this help you to get access to new ideas and fresher perspectives, but it will also help to ensure that all the voices in your office are being heard.
Plus, if you're at a lower level in your company, asking to run a meeting and advocating for your ideas is the kind of initiative that bosses love to see.
Rethink Your Hiring Strategy
One of the most effective ways to ensure that your workplace is as diverse as possible?
Start by taking a hard look at your current hiring strategy.
Figure out where your referrals are coming from, and from which communities head-hunters are pulling.
Ask those working to create your team to pull from underserved communities. Host a workshop or seminar in a community you'd like to hire people from and identify the talent you see there.
Be The Change
We hope that this post has helped you to not only understand what inclusive entrepreneurship is but also to be inspired by the positive trends and changes that are already happening in the working world.
As an entrepreneur yourself, in the end, it is up to you to continue this commitment to making a change. In fact, one day being in the position to uplift people from your community can be an enormous motivator.
Are you looking for additional entrepreneurial advice? Have questions about how to create the perfect team, or how to pitch an angel investor?
Be sure to check out our website and blog for more invaluable advice on how to make your company the next name to know in the startup world.