Leadership SkillsTeamwork

Allyship – Key Skill to Manage Diversity

In cross-cultural world, allyship is the key skill to master and practice….read through

Estimated reading time: 5 minutes

What is Allyship?

In today’s workplace, allyship is a key tool or strategy used by leaders and individuals to align as accomplices, collaborators, and co-conspirators who combat injustice and encourage fairness in the workplace. 

Allyship is usually achieved through friendships that are supportive and also through public actions of support and advocacy. 


Allies can push for changes to workplace policies, practices, and practices. 

In a world where consumers, employees, and investors increasingly see the importance of equity and inclusion as not an option but a necessity, allyship by the top executives of an organization is now a necessity. 

Allyship is an ongoing method of cultivating relationships with built-in trust, consistency, and accountability.

Allyship in the workplace – How to Practice it?

All people need allies in their private life and at work. Much more than a companion or mentor, An ally is committed to finding common ground with colleagues and engaging when discrimination is a problem and assisting, advocating for, and defending individuals. 

An organization that encourages the concept of allyship can go a long way toward creating a diverse, inclusive environment where people of diverse races, ethnicities, genders, ages, creeds, and sexual orientations feel appreciated and accepted for their contribution. 

However, not all workplaces offer formal allyship education.

This is the best part you don’t need to expect your company to instruct you on how to conduct allyship. Furthermore, allyship practice isn’t just for executives in the C-suite and HR managers. Managers, team members, and individuals can learn the techniques and, perhaps most crucially, the knowledge of becoming an ally for any person at work, resulting in a benefit to the whole organization.

How do you begin if you’d like to be a friend in your workplace? 

The first step is to be educated to understand how to come to a common understanding with colleagues who do not appear or sound like you and might behave or dress or show affection differently. 


To truly open your eyes to understanding the different perspectives of your colleagues, You must be prepared to admit your biases and try to overcome these ingrained prejudices by changing your perception and way of speaking about people.

Try these three tried and tested ways to be a better at workplace allyship.

1. Examine the situation: If you observe an incident that seems to violate the principles of equity, diversity, and inclusion, consider:

  • What am I seeing?
  • What do I consider as fair in comparison to unfair?
  • Is there a chance to develop?
  • Are there other people who are observing this?
  • What’s the possible impact of the influence of politics in organizations?

2. Take a look at your position: Consider your position. Take a look at:

  • What can I do to influence this scenario?
  • What’s my viewpoint on the issue?
  • What’s the position taken by the person whom I want to help?
  • Who do I speak to regarding this?

3. Take action: Now is the time to take action when you’re confident about the situation and what you want to do. However, before you move forward, take a moment to think and decide:

  • What steps can I take?
  • What are the actions I should be avoiding?
  • What is the best moment to take action?
  • What will my action affect, and in what way?

Create an Involved Culture

Through individual allyship actions, a more welcoming environment can be created by:

  • Sponsorship and mentoring are a way to help those from communities that are underrepresented to encourage career advancement and improve retention at the company. Sponsorship is distinct from mentoring. A sponsor actively supports an individual’s professional development, while mentoring involves assisting.
  • Indicating inappropriate behavior, those in high-ranking positions can criticize unacceptable behavior of those who aren’t represented and to be heard. Some people who are not represented may not feel confident in bringing issues up due to fear of backlash or of the possibility of damaging professional relationships.
  • All employees should be involved in issues related to diversity and inclusionencouraging diversity and creating an inclusive culture is beneficial for the business. Everyone should be actively involved. Don’t delegate this daunting job to underrepresented people. 
  • Use inclusive language. Be aware of gender-specific words, and use the language that includes everyone from all walks of life. For instance, using “partner” instead of gender-specific terms like “girl/boyfriend” as well as “husband/wife” to be more inclusive of people members of the LGBTQI+ group. Languages can either unite or divide us. To build a relationship with others, try to modify any language that causes division. Beware of using the phrases “all/them/they” when talking about specific groups of people. Instead, think in terms of “some” and “we.” When you use the term “some,” you’ll break down stereotypes. If you’re using “we,” you emphasize the sense of a shared goal and make you accountable for the outcomes.
  • Changing how you talk about and think about your coworkers across different personal perspectives is at the heart of friendship. Allies should be prepared to support their opinions and statements by taking action. 
  • Training on unconscious bias regularly. Understand that unconscious bias unchecked is not and cannot be fixed following one bias-training session. It is a process that continues to evolve, and constant challenge to our peers and ourselves is necessary to foster growth and to learn in this area.
  • Experimenting with different recruiting methods to attract and keep various types of individuals. Join with organizations that promote gender equality, attend conferences, and reach out to the underrepresented for honest opinions on the places they’d like to work. And listen to the individuals who you want to connect with.
  • Recognizing privilege and using it to increase the visibility of unrepresented voices. Understanding and acknowledging privilege can be a challenging and stressful task. Having difficult conversations about yourself and recognizing the societal and systematic issues that may have benefited you can be eye-opening and allow you to leverage the privilege to empower the voices of those without the privilege.

Allyship in a nutshell,

Being an all-around friend isn’t always an easy task. However, when you have the right understanding and true dedication, increased awareness, and last but certainly not least, practicing, you’ll be able to be a master at allyship, helping to make an inclusive and diverse workplace that benefits all.

The true ally must constantly listen to the people around them, adjust their thoughts, and modify what they believe to be true.

It’s an exciting and difficult journey to become and maintain an ally. However, it is certainly one that is worth the effort.

Download free allyship worksheet to start.

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Carlena McCandless

πŸ“ Crafton, PA Corporate Coach, Specializing in Corporate Training Exercises and Games πŸ–‹οΈ Head Writer and Editor with an MBA… More »

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