As “a core thing that holds the organization together,” internal communications are more important than ever, Diversity Decoder founder Linda Dunbar tells Doug Simon in the latest “PR’s Top Pros Talk” video.

With working at home becoming standard practice, Dunbar says that keeping everyone in the loop is essential, though increasingly difficult. She cites the importance of “connecting staffers to the strategic plan so they know where things are going, and they can feel like a part of it.”

Employees also need to know where their companies stand on the major issues of the day, especially when it comes to fostering diversity in the workplace. Dunbar sees an “information gap” between how people of color see the issue and how white people interpret it. That “gap needs to be filled,” she says, “because you cannot put a diversity program on top of a void.”

She is optimistic about what lies ahead, however. “My sense is that most leadership understands where this needs to go,” she says. That understanding is tied to external, as well as internal, factors. “Part of it is because investors are demanding it, so it’s good corporate governance. Some of it is because populations are changing, and so if you want to be able to relate to your employees and your customers, you have to do this.”

Dunbar also stresses that while change seems at least somewhat inevitable, it’s not going to come if companies don’t make the effort. “It has to be doing the work. It has to be understanding the history, how we got here, and what the problems really are. There is no shortcut to woke.”

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