Now more than ever, companies are recognizing the need to enhance their diversity and inclusion practices to better reflect the diversity of their companies and customers alike. Cultural competence – the ability to understand, appreciate and interact with people from cultures or belief systems – is an important skill to have, especially to employers. As a job candidate preparing for an interview, you should be prepared to answer questions about diversity and inclusion to ensure the interviewer sees you as a good fit for the company.
Some questions you may be asked include:
- What does diversity and inclusion mean to you?
- Talk about a time where you advocated for diversity or inclusion in your workplace.
- How would you react to a coworker being insensitive or inappropriate?
- Are you able to perform the following activities, without limitations as necessary for this role?
Your prospective employer wants to know how you define diversity, why inclusion is it important to you and the world around you and how you would respond to a situation if it ever arose in the workplace.
Responding to Interview Questions about Diversity and Inclusion
- Prepare Ahead of Time
Analyze your own understanding of diversity and try to think of a time you were impacted, either directly or indirectly, and how you handled it. Read about inclusion to become more informed about cultural competence. Research the organization you’re interviewing with to find out how they value diversity as part of their company culture. Typically, the company website is a great place to start.
- Show Authenticity
Be genuine when talking about your enthusiasm for diversity. Discuss your personal experiences with people of different cultures or an example of a time you witnessed a lack of inclusion. Explain the value of learning from and honoring other cultures.
- Provide Specific Examples
An employer will be impressed with evidence showing that you support and value diversity and inclusion. Give examples of how your diversity skills have developed through your experiences in life and in a professional environment.
What Can’t Interviewers Ask?
In the United States, some questions are illegal for interviewers to ask in order to protect you and other job applicants from discrimination. Any person going into an interview should be aware of the questions they don’t have to answer but similarly have answers ready, should such a situation arise. If you are aware of the inappropriate questions, you’ll be able to answer the legal ones with confidence.
Inappropriate topics include:
- Medical information
- Height and weight
- Race, ethnicity, or color
- Gender or Sex
- U.S. Equal Opportunity Employment Commission
- Marital or family status or pregnancy
- Sexual orientation
AccruePartners recruiters are comprehensively trained and adhere to the AccruePartners Business Systems (ABS) proprietary process. We engage our AccruePartners Business Systems to match our clients with extensively vetted candidates at both qualitative and quantitative levels. Our team consists of certified experts on the topic of diversity recruiting by AIRS and LinkedIn to help protect the rights of our clients and candidates. Many companies can do business, but HOW we do business exemplifies why we are the clear partner to help you achieve your career goals.
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