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If you want your culture to be more inclusive, start with the way you run meetings. Some employees don’t feel comfortable speaking up in meetings, or they’re likely to get interrupted when they do.
That’s why leaders need to make sure everyone feels welcome. Send an email before the meeting that invites all attendees to be ready to share as well as listen. As people arrive, welcome them by name and make sure everyone has a (literal) seat at the table.
Let people know they can speak honestly and offer dissenting opinions without fear of retribution. During the meeting, keep track of who’s talking — and who’s not. If someone hasn’t offered their thoughts, call on them and ask what they think about the topic at hand.
And if someone is interrupted, step in quickly: “Wait a minute, I want to hear more of what Alejandra has to say.” Leading meetings this way creates room for everyone to contribute and sets a standard for respect across the group.