Making D&I Intentions Actionable

Collaborative Conversations with Asset Protection

When leading retailers convened to launch RILA’s Diversity & Inclusion Leaders Council three years ago, Council members identified retail organization-wide participation as one of their priority focus areas.

Why focus on such an ambitious task? Ultimately D&I programs can’t succeed without it. If everyone in an organization is engaged and intentional about the imperative for D&I and feels or wants to be accountable for driving positive impact, D&I becomes a self-sustaining priority across the entire organization.

To help foster this organization-wide D&I participation, the DILC has intentionally co-located meetings and developed joint discussions with other RILA executive communities, like Supply Chain, Legal, Sustainability and Asset Protection leaders.

A series of conversations between RILA’s DILC and Asset Protection Leaders Council in particular helped these groups discuss how customers and employees are both capable of and subject to unconscious bias in retail stores – and how to mitigate bias and discrimination.

Here are a few tactics identified from those discussions to consider:
  1. Strengthen the relationship between the D&I and AP teams. In order to support any of the other tactics, D&I and AP can benefit from regular touchpoints. At minimum these can be leveraged to review existing AP tactics and technology use for planning the application and implementation of new AP tactics and technologies.
  2. Get everyone on the same page. Company policies and statements related to mitigating unconscious bias and discrimination are more impactful when they are clearly written, shared, easy to find, regularly referenced and consistently applied. Consider how they apply to both employees and customers.
  3. Examine current trainings for store associates and AP associates. Incorporating training elements like scenarios, roleplay and other risk identification exercises unique to each position are adult learning teaching tactics that help demystify more abstract concepts like unconscious bias.
  4. Find the right metrics. Learn and continuously improve by determining what information helps the company pinpoint what strategies are working best and how to allocate future resources.
Organization-wide D&I participation may an ongoing process, but the conversations initiated along the way help identify what actionable steps can support its success.

Interested in learning more about takeaways from this discussion or getting engaged? RILA’s Diversity & Inclusion Leaders Council is open to all retailers. If you lead D&I at your retail company, reach out to Erin Hiatt, VP of CSR to learn more.
  • Diversity
  • Investing in People
  • Asset Protection

Stay in the know

Subscribe to our newsletter