Our Commitment to Equality
Over the past few weeks, our team at Negotiatus has been engaging in an open and honest dialogue about the unrest in our country and the amount of injustice shown towards the black community that is oftentimes difficult to put into words. It has been important to both leadership and staff that we tackle this problem as we tackle many problems we encounter here at Negotiatus: 1) Become more educated 2) Talk about it 3) Act.
Become more educated.
First and foremost, we boldly denounce these acts of injustice and fundamentally oppose racism in all its forms. We stand with our black colleagues, family, friends, and neighbors to fight against the acts of racism and violence that the black community faces every day. We realized that before we could jump into action, it was critical to take a moment to look inward and understand how we as a business to date have actively been contributing to the fight against racism, and where we can do better.
Immediately, we created several discussion forums for staff with the intent of fostering productive and difficult conversations, sharing resources and educational materials, and providing feedback in a way that has allowed us to not only understand the context of the broader problem, but how we can uniquely position ourselves to drive change.
Talk about it.
The conversations we have had over the course of the past few days have been difficult but highly rewarding. In short, we have found that we are not where we want to be when it comes to internal diversity and inclusion policies at the corporate level, and we have been missing the mark on our corporate social responsibility efforts.
As a team, we believe that the most important thing we can do is implement best-in-class internal policies and procedures so that we can create lasting, systemic change within the company.
We know for a fact that in order to be successful as a business, we must have diverse opinions, perspectives, and experiences around the table. And to do that, we need to actively and intentionally build a team that is made up of individuals from diverse communities and backgrounds.
By taking the time to become more educated (and we still have plenty more to go) and talk openly about where we can improve, we have determined that our main focus will be put towards implementing strict hiring policies and procedures in order to diversify the pool of candidates coming in the door and ultimately joining our team. This isn’t something we simply want to do - it’s something that we want to do well/, meaning it will take a lot of care, detail, and time to get right.
Our team brought to light several other possible improvements that can be made internally, and while we will focus our efforts first on revising our hiring process, we have identified additional areas that we can start to tackle next:
We will incorporate ‘culture add’ interviews for all roles to ensure that all new hires don’t “fit” our culture, but that they actively contribute to our culture through their diverse perspectives and experiences.
We will require all staff to participate in diversity training, including implicit bias training.
We will implement several inclusion initiatives - from guest speakers to documentary viewings to small group discussions - to ensure that this dialogue does not end in the coming weeks.
We will incorporate several product changes to make it easier for our clients to make an impact through our platform, including directing donations through Amazon Smile and building vendor tags to easily identify black and minority owned businesses.
We will continue to learn from leaders in the industry on best practices for D&I so that our policies evolve with the needs of our employees.
While we work to raise the bar on diversity and inclusion efforts internally, we also want to provide immediate support to our local black communities through monetary donations. Our team is excited to launch a corporate matching donation program this month that will directly support organizations fighting on the front lines to combat racism.
We are excited to tackle the hard work that lies ahead and continue challenging ourselves to be better every day. If you have suggestions for how we can continue to learn, grow, and evolve, please don’t hesitate to reach out: firstname.lastname@example.org.