Diversity and inclusion are not just the latest buzz words in the event planning world. These core values are about ensuring that everyone in an organization feels seen, heard and included. When planning an event, diversity is not just about hiring a contractor that is a woman. Inclusion is not just about adding a person who fits into a minority category to the planning team. Embracing diversity and inclusion involves more than checking a box. It requires intentional actions towards making sure your event represents and mirrors the diversity of your attendees. Here are three ways to integrate diversity as an advantage to your next event.

Food Diversity

When planning the menu for your family event of business meeting, consider adding in diverse food choices. Do some out of the box thinking by first considering your participants and their food choices. Add in vegan, vegetarian and gluten free options for food preferences. Also consider cultural options, like halal and kosher, if you have guests with religious needs. Dairy-free and nut-free options for those with allergies. We often recommend sending out a quick food preference request to your guests to see what types of options they may need. The best parties cater to the needs of the guests in a meaningful and memorable way.

Diverse Speakers

For corporate events, business meetings, sales kick offs, conferences and other professional style occurrences, consider booking speakers that have diverse backgrounds. The addition of speakers, panelists and presenter that have different backgrounds means your audiences become exposed to new and different ideas. Often this is the point of a great speaker presentation so why not include an effort to invite diversity and inclusion values into your talent screening process. Be authentic to the theme or topic of the gathering of course. Inviting diversity into any environment for the sake of just adding diversity can backfire quickly and become an insult.

Inclusive Sponsorships

Many events, especially festivals, music concerts, shows and other community events, often have sponsors to help cover the costs. These sponsors receive exposure to the community by showcasing logos and other branding on event marketing. Consider looking at sponsors that align with diversity and inclusion values that you want present to the event. Look for women-owned and minority-owned businesses to invite into a sponsorship relationship. If you find these groups to be smaller than the budgetary benefits that a large sponsor brings to the table, offer smaller sponsor packages to smaller organizations. Then when reviewing larger organizations, see if they have diversity and inclusion as a core value before inviting them into a sponsor position.

The Wright Group Event Services can speak with authority on this topic as many who work for us come from a wide array of backgrounds. From Hispanic to Russian, men to women, black, brown and white, our organization values the amazing contributions of each of our team members. We are proud to report diversity and inclusion are alive and well here at our event supply rental company. We look forward to continuing to grow keeping these values front and center.