October is National Hispanic Heritage month, and while celebrating it is important, it's crucial to translate your company’s support with policies to help your Latinx employees succeed. Latinx individuals face unique challenges in the workplace and discrimination can take its toll, causing fatigue and hampering career advancement. By creating programs that support all employees, your company can attract and retain Latinx talent. Diverse teams far outperform non-diverse ones, so by investing in inclusion measures, your company will benefit as well. Below are some ways to assist your Latinx employees and ensure they have the tools they need to succeed:
Create a Latinx-focused Employee Resource Group
Employee resource groups, or ERGs, are valuable ways for employees with similar backgrounds to support each other. They provide invaluable mentoring and networking opportunities to employees and also generally work to support the interests of the group they represent. By creating one focused solely on Latinx individuals, your company can ensure that those employees have an easy way to connect and share precious advice. As mentioned earlier, they also serve as a great way to connect mentors with mentees and, more generally, create a community of Latinx workers at your organization.
Provide Scholarships for Latinx Students
Supporting the Latinx community isn't merely limited to the workplace. Creating a scholarship fund to pay college tuition for underprivileged Latinx students is an excellent way to support hardworking and promising students. A college education opens an endless number of doors, so helping deserving students achieve a good education also helps create a more talented Latinx workforce down the road, further lifting up the community.
Create Management and Executive Level Diversity Goals
Diversity needs to span all levels of your organization, so implementing programs to ensure Latinx representation in leadership roles, not just in entry-level positions, is a crucial step. Not only is diversity valuable for business performance, but it's also essential to demonstrate a commitment to diversity by leading as an example.
Establish Equitable Hiring Practices
It's vital to ensure that your company isn't accidentally discriminating against Latinx individuals during the hiring process. Having a diverse group of interviewers can help prevent unconscious bias, as can D&I training geared toward recognizing and correcting biased judgments. Companies can also reach out to and partner with local Hispanic/Latinx organizations to spread awareness of job openings and connect mentors with possible mentees. Furthermore, businesses should ensure that they advertise job opportunities in ways that will reach the Latinx community so that they have equal access to and awareness of available jobs.
Donate to Regional and National Initiatives for the Latinx Community
Donating funds and resources to Latinx organizations and advocacy groups such as the Association of Latino Professionals for America (ALPFA), the Council for Latino Workplace Equity (CLWE), and the Hispanic Association on Corporate Responsibility (HACR) is an excellent way to use financial resources to back up your company's commitment to diversity and inclusions.
Host Events for Latinx Employees
Networking events, holiday celebrations, heritage month festivities… the possibilities are endless. Events offer a chance to bring Latinx employees together while also educating other employees about the rich cultural heritage that belongs to the Latinx community. By bringing people together, your company can better create an understanding and a sense of general inclusiveness, all while having fun.