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Creating a diverse and inclusive store only makes us stronger in the retail industry. Learn how to deal with your own implicit biases and create a safe space for all walks of life.
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Our goal is to create an inclusive, diverse and equal workplace where everyone feels values. Diversity doesn't just mean in opinion, it means an array of different points of views and background. Only together can we be stronger.
All voices in our organization have the right to be heard, no matter the gender, race, ethnicity, sexual orientation, religion and identity. It's important to let our customers know this as well. We want to create an inclusive space all!
Implicit bias is shaped by each of our individual experiences and collective histories.
According to studies, all people hold some sort of unconscious bias that dictate how they think about others. This is our implicit bias.
Institutional Bias Implicit bias can go beyond your personal opinion. Based on many other's biases, institutional bias is created. As members of a wider community, we must recognize this and try to understand it.
In order to combat institutional bias, it's important that we create a culture of inclusion. This includes holding meetings at times everyone can attend regardless of their childcare needs, providing accessible options for our customers to browse the store, as well as any actions we can do to accommodate our current and future customers.
When thinking about institutional biases, it's necessary to consider the historical foundations of our common practices. For example, work hours were created at a time when men were mainly the breadwinners of a household, and were delegated for their benefit. A 9-to-5 work week may be antiquated or not work for most of our co-workers.
This is why we value feedback and listen to our customers and co-workers' complaints or concerns. We are a constantly evolving institution who is attuned to the needs of others and always strives for success.
Our Goals To be aware of our own implicit biases by practicing self-reflection. To pay attention to the national conversation in regards of bias, racism, gender discrimination and classism. To normalise conversations about implicit bias within our organisation. To achieve an inclusive, fair and equal business that puts our diversity at the forefront of all of our decisions. To address implicit bias while respect all parties.
In high stress situations, biases can arise, as people are less on guard as they deal with difficult situations.
Keep up with the news and educate yourself about the national dialogue regarding race, gender and discrimination.
Creating an Inclusive Shopping Experience
Clothes have no gender.
Do not assume anyone's gender. If a perceived man is shopping in what would be called the "women's" section, do not assume it is for their girlfriend, wife or mother.
We want to make sure all of our customers can shop for what they want and how they want without judgment. We do not want to limit their fashion choices to the conventional gender binaries.
Things to Do Greet everyone at the door equally and provide them the same level of customer service, regardless of their perceived race, gender, age, or ability Do not assume you know what a customer wants until they ask for it. Allow customers to shop anywhere in the store, rather than restricting them or judging them based on their perceived gender. Give everyone the benefit of the doubt.
Our Zero Tolerance Discrimination Policy
We will not tolerate ANY: Racist language Harassment of any kind Violence Threats or intimidation Any other misconduct
We have a ZERO TOLERANCE policy towards racism, sexism, transphobia or any other explicit discrimination and bias.
What is suspicious behaviour? Entering and exiting the store many times without making a purchase and without a known reason. Watching the cash register for a long time or multiple times. Looking around the store for cameras. Putting items in their pockets, under their coats, or in their bags. Removing labels or cutting out security tags.
Listening to Our Customers
Our customers' complaints, critiques and comments are how we evolve our business and ultimately make the best shopping experience.
When you take a complaint A sincere apology is always necessary. No matter what your feelings about the situation are, the store will apologize to any customer who is making a complaint. In your apology, try to include steps you will do to improve the situation. Let them know how we will contact them, if they wish to know an update. After taking the complaint—thank them!
When taking criticism: Do not challenge the customer. Even if you feel the complaint is wrong, do not express this sentiment. We want our guests to feel listened to, and assured that their complaint will get to the right place. Never argue with them, ever. It will only make things worse.
**Always believe the customer. ** Very rarely do customers lie when they're making a complaint. It takes too much effort and is not worth the confrontation. If they are unhappy—believe them. When applicable, give the customer store credit for an item not working properly.
Try to compartmentalize your emotions. It's not good to get defensive when taking a complaint. Also, don't take it personally, there are a million reasons why a customer may be agitated, and it's almost never the salesperson. If they are becoming emotional, let them. But do not respond with more emotion.
Let them have the "win." Customers should always leave feeling happy or satisfied. If that means letting them have the last word—let them have it!