12 Nov Promoting Diversity and Inclusion in the Workplace
“Inclusion is not always straight forward or simple, it’s a daily practice but it’s worth it.”
Monk Renovations is a locally owned and operated company based in Bedford. They specialize in kitchen renovations, bathroom and ensuite renovations, basement renovations as well as other home reno projects involving additions, exteriors, decks and anything in between. We sat down with owner Dan Monk, to discuss how Monk Renovations keeps inclusion and diversity at the forefront of their business.
Monk Renovations currently employs 13 people including estimators, a project coordinator and carpenters. Several members of the team are recent immigrants including an apprentice carpenter Monk connected with through ISANS, Immigrant Services Association of Nova Scotia.
“Diversity of thought, experience and background adds a lot of value. Working with someone with a different experience who has new ideas enhances your business and helps it grow.”
Monk encourages other business in the industry to also support women in the trades. Although he has struggled to find women in the carpentry trade, he is always on the look out for new talent and hopes to employ more female carpenters in the future.
“The female carpenters I have had working for me were extremely skilled and showed exceptional attention to detail. Most of our clients are female, women are making a lot of the decisions for remodeling of homes and having more women represented in the business helps build relationships and connect with our clients.”
Monk Renovations works hard to ensure that everyone on the team feels welcome and respected and says that other businesses can benefit from diversifying their workforce too and there are resources out there to help.
Tips for Creating a More Diverse and Inclusive Workplace:
1. Hire immigrates: Nova Scotia has lots of skilled newcomers looking for opportunities. If you are not sure where to start, Immigrant Services Association of Nova Scotia (ISANS) can guide you through the search and hire process and help you find the right candidate.
2. Seek out the Underrepresented Groups: Whenever possible, make efforts to hire more women, youth, minorities, or persons with varying ability. As a society, we must look past the stereotypes and remain open minded when hiring for our companies, recognising that diversity builds strong teams.
3. Reduce Barriers by Providing Appropriate Compensation: It is important to provide a living wage with great benefits, so a person can live a good, healthy life, raise a family, and not just scrape by. This helps remove barriers. Let’s start taking responsibility for our employees so they can confidently represent our companies and take care of business.
Written by: Construction Safety Nova Scotia