To Retain Employees, Focus on Inclusion – Not Just Diversity

Posted: 12/04/18

In this HBR article, our client Karen Brown discusses how to retain more employees by getting beneath “identity cover” – the parts of themselves that employees hide, such as religion and sexual orientation, when they differ from the majority of their colleagues.

Brown provides three ways company leaders can understand their employees’ true identities and better fulfill their needs: 1) segment employee engagement survey results by minority groups, 2) use independent facilitators to conduct focus groups, and 3) get personal in one-on-one discussions. She explains how these tactics create a more inclusive environment that enables employees to be themselves and makes them want to stay.

Shortly after the article appeared on, Karen was invited to present a talk on diversity and inclusion for TedX in Portland, present at an event hosted by AT Kearney in London, and create a webinar based on the content for the International Consortium for Executive Development Research (ICEDR), one of the world’s largest talent development networks. It also became required reading for an MBA class at Columbia University.

On Karen’s social media platforms, the article received more than 60 comments, 140 likes and 20 shares. She also received numerous requests for her coaching services from corporate leaders and employees around the world.