It goes without saying that we are always keeping track of the role of corporate alumni within an organization. So, we were thrilled to come across an article published on LinkedIn highlighting the part alumni can play in creating an inclusive environment in the workplace. 

Writer Laura Hilgers summarizes some fantastic inclusivity insights raised by Danny Guillory, Head of Diversity, Equity & Inclusion at Dropbox, and Melissa Thompson, SVP of Talent Acquisition at Nielsen. The feedback was shared during a recent virtual event hosted by LinkedIn, titled ‘Driving Change: How to create a more equitable and inclusive workplace.’ 

Here are a few key takeaways regarding the creation of a more inclusive environment in the modern-day workplace from the article and event.

Five Steps To Take Towards An Inclusive Environment In The Workplace

1. Boomerang Hires Have A Part To Play

We live in the era of boomerang hires, and while rehiring former employees does pose some challenges, it also offers a host of incredible benefits. 

Companies like Nielsen place a lot of stock in their alumni networks because it provides them with excellent rehires. Their internal black employee resource group keeps track of exiting employees and reconnects down the line when new opportunities emerge. 

Not only is this a great way to bring upscaled talent into the mix when they’re ready to do so but it also boosts employee retention. When team members can tell that there is scope for growth and collaboration with their employer even if they choose to leave at some point, they are, in fact, far more likely to stay the course.

2. Provide Continuous Education To Employees

For a workplace to be truly inclusive, everyone needs to understand what the issues are and how they can contribute to a place of free and fair inclusion. 

Dropbox introduced an education initiative that brought in academics, poets, and artists to explain the black experience in America. While not every company can go such an extensive route, there are great online resources, which can spark conversation in a similar way. 

3. Have Data-Driven Conversations

Survey data can also be an excellent resource for opening lines of dialogue in terms of different employee experiences within your company. Difficult conversations can be easier to start if you begin from the point of impartial data, e.g., ‘40% of our black employees feel that there isn’t scope for growth in our company’. This then opens the floor for interaction in this regard.

4. Stretch Assignments For The Workforce

Make room for stretch projects that allow employees from underrepresented groups to grow professionally with the assistance of one-on-one mentoring, peer mentoring, professional development opportunities, and so forth.

5. Track Progress With Assessment Tools 

Evaluate the success of your inclusion efforts based on metrics using SaaS-based tools that offer checklists, templates, and self-assessments that you can use to audit the effects of your program and what you are trying to achieve.


Creating a more inclusive workplace holds countless benefits for everyone involved. Leveraging alumni relations to facilitate boomerang hires goes a long way to fostering a space of diversity and inclusion.

Other strategies that have a similarly positive effect include continuous education, data-driven conversations, stretch assignments, and keeping track of progress by means of innovative assessment tools.