20 books to help companies improve workplace diversity and inclusion


  • Better Allies: Everyday Actions to Create Inclusive, Engaging Workplaces

    In Better Allies, Karen Catlin offers a guide on how to create a more inclusive work culture. She instructs leaders how to hire and retain a diverse workforce, advocate for others, give effective performance feedback, and use more inclusive language. 

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  • The Better Allies Approach to Hiring

    Building on the methodologies explained in her first book Better Allies: Everyday Actions to Create Inclusive, Engaging Workplaces, Karen Catlin has created a helpful hiring guide that includes best practices to recruit people from underrepresented ethnicities and genders, non-traditional educational backgrounds, with gaps on their resumes, or from older generations. The Better Allies Approach to Hiring includes examples, stories, checklists, rubrics, and guidelines to help you adapt your hiring processes to attract and retain diverse applicants.

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  • Inclusion: Diversity, The New Workplace & the Will to Change

    Author Jennifer Brown shares her expertise about harnessing the power of diversity and inclusion in her book Inclusion. She explains how employees who feel fully welcomed, valued, respected, and heard by their colleagues and organizations will ultimately serve to strengthen your company and how it’s critical to build systems that embrace diversity in all its forms, including: Identity and background to diversity of thought, style, approach, and experience. 

    SEE: Diversity and Inclusion policy (TechRepublic Premium)

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  • Driven by Difference: How Great Companies Fuel Innovation Through Diversity

    In his book Driven by Difference, author David Livermore identifies the necessary management practices to ensure conflicts are minimized and informational diversity found in varied values and experiences is maximized. Livermore cites diversity success stories from Google, Alibaba, Novartis, and others and teaches managers how to create the optimal environment, consider various audiences when presenting ideas, design and test for different users, merge differing perspectives, align goals and expectations, and much more.

    Hiring kit: Chief diversity officer (TechRepublic Premium)

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  • Success Through Diversity: Why the Most Inclusive Companies Will Win

    In her book, Success Through Diversity, Carol Fulp explores the ways a racially and ethnically diverse workforce creates more dynamic and profitable businesses. Through new hiring methods, aligning managers around diversity, offering different kinds of leadership development, and engaging employees to embrace differences, companies can stay competitive and improve their customer base. Fulp also provides case histories for corporate cultures like the NFL, Hallmark Health, PepsiCo, and her own workplace experiences to illustrate how a diverse workforce is an essential asset to organizations. 

    SEE: IT leader’s guide to achieving workplace diversity (free PDF) (TechRepublic)

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  • Building an Inclusive Organization: Leveraging the Power of a Diverse Workforce

    In their book, Building an Inclusive Organization, authors Stephen Frost and Raafi-Karim Alidina offer a practical guide for creating a more inclusive work environment, including how to remove unconscious biases from recruitment and selection and embedding inclusion into an organization’s culture and business strategy. Using case studies from Uber, Salesforce, Harvard, and more, Frost and Alidina outline the best way to implement diversity processes and policies across all sectors including tech, finance, academia, and foundations. 

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  • The Memo: What Women of Color Need to Know to Secure a Seat at the Table

    Founder and CEO of The Memo LLC, a career development company for women of color, author Minda Harts uses her knowledge and entrepreneurial experience to offer career advice for women of color in her book The Memo. Harts addresses the “ugly truths” that prevent women of color from rising in the corporate world and offers them advice on ways to network as  well as how to deal with office politics, microaggressions, and the wage gap, while making real changes to the current system. 

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  • Athena Rising: How and Why Men Should Mentor Women

    In his book Athena Rising, author W. Brad Johnson suggests various ways to mentor women deliberately and effectively. This straightforward manual offers a guide for men of all institutions, organizations, and businesses to become excellent mentors to women.

    SEE: How to launch mentorship programs for women in tech (TechRepublic)

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  • The Future of Tech Is Female: How to Achieve Gender Diversity

    In The Future of Tech is Female, author Douglas M. Branson explores why this disparity exists and suggests ways to combat gender inequality, including mandatory quota laws for female employment, pledge programs, and limitations on the H-1B Visa program. With over 15 years of experience in the field, Branson explains why women should be in leadership roles, not just within the tech industry, and suggests a reform in attitudes toward women in the video and computer and gaming field–a gateway to many STEM futures.

    SEE: The state of women in computer science: An investigative report (cover story PDF) (TechRepublic)

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  • Whistling Vivaldi: How Stereotypes Affect Us and What We Can Do

    In his book Whistling Vivaldi, acclaimed social psychologist Claude M. Steele offers a first-person account of the research that supports his groundbreaking conclusions on stereotypes and identity. Steele sheds light on social phenomena such as racial and gender gaps in test scores and Americans’ belief in the superior athletic prowess of African-American males and offers suggestions for ways to reduce these “stereotype threats.” 

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  • Between the World and Me

    A New York Times bestseller, Between the World and Me by Ta-Nehisi Coates is written as a letter to the author’s son and is an eye-opening look at being Black in the US and how it affects daily lives. Detailing the realities of racial tension in America and using his own personal experiences, Coates asserts that white supremacy is something that will never go away and will always be something Black people will have to navigate and sheds light on the past, confronts current racial issues, and offers a powerful vision for moving forward. 

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  • White Fragility

    American academic, lecturer, and author Robin DiAngelo coined the term “white fragility” in 2011 to refer to “defensive responses by many white people to discussions of societal discrimination, structural racism, and white privilege.” DiAngelo’s book White Fragility expands upon those ideas and explains how white Americans are insulated from race-based stress in various ways: Through institutions, cultural representations, the media, school textbooks, movies, advertisements, and more and explores the negative reactions (defensiveness and aggression) white people have when forced to look at racial inequality and how they enable it.

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  • So You Want to Talk About Race

    In her New York Times bestseller, So You Want to Talk About Race, author Ijeoma Oluo addresses the societal systems that contribute to racism and oppression and suggests ways to have thoughtful, open conversations about topics like white privilege, dealing with racists remarks made by people you know, intersectionality, and affirmative action. So You Want to Talk About Race offers an examination of racism in the world, and also the role white people play in it.

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  • Blindspot: Hidden Biases of Good People

    Mahzarin R. Banaji and Anthony G. Greenwald’s book Blind Spot: Hidden Biases of Good People discusses how lifetime exposure to cultural attitudes regarding age, gender, race, ethnicity, religion, sexuality, social class, disability status, and nationality affects our attitudes toward others and how we have a metaphorical “blindspot” in our minds that house our hidden biases. The book is intended to raise our awareness to this blindspot in order to understand ourselves, gain awareness, and adapt our beliefs to be more fair to those around us. 

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  • Biased: Uncovering the Hidden Prejudice That Shapes What We See, Think, and Do

    Whether we realize it or not, racial biases built into political, educational, medical, justice, and financial systems exist and have an effect on our daily lives. Stanford psychology professor and author Jennifer Eberhardt exposes these hidden prejudices in her book Biased and uses a scientific, analytical approach to explain how we can dismantle them. 

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  • The Hidden Brain: How Our Unconscious Minds Elect Presidents, Control Markets, Wage Wars, and Save Our Lives

    Using a series of narratives, author Shankar Vedantam employs the latest discoveries in neuroscience, psychology, and behavioral science to examine the darkest corner of our minds and how it impacts our choices as individuals and as a society. From who we vote for to who we date to hiring biases, The Hidden Brain features fascinating characters, dramatic storytelling, and cutting-edge science to explore the secrets our brains keep from us and how they can be uncovered. 

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  • Overcoming Age Discrimination in Employment: An Essential Guide for Workers, Advocates & Employers

    Overcoming Age Discrimination in Employment by Patricia G. Barnes offers a breakdown of age discrimination laws in the US and explains how victims of ageism could face possible termination, chronic unemployment, prolonged low-wage or temporary work, forced early retirement, etc. In her book, Barnes also answers questions about age-related harassment, protection of the Age Discrimination in Employment Act of 1967, liability issues, employer policies regarding age discrimination, and much more. 

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  • This Chair Rocks: A Manifesto Against Ageism

    Activist and author Ashton Applewhite uses humor to explain ways we can combat ageist beliefs in her book This Chair Rocks. Applewhite shares her own experiences dealing with ageism and discusses the stereotypes American society has about older individuals. This Chair Rocks also takes a look at ageism in the workplace in relation to health as well as the history of ageism in society. 

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  • Allies at Work: Creating a Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual and Transgender Inclusive Work Environment

    Author Dr. David M. Hall’s book Allies at Work is a guide for cultivating cultural change in the workplace and creating an inclusive work environment for everyone, regardless of sexual orientation or gender identity/expression. Hall outlines the daily struggles faced by LGBTQ people and encourages people to become allies to promote equality in the workplace. 

    SEE: How to create a more inclusive workplace for LGBTQ employees (free PDF) (TechRepublic)

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  • No Pity: People with Disabilities Forging a New Civil Rights Movement

    Award-winning journalist Joseph P. Shapiro’s book No Pity offers insight and understanding into the experiences of the differently-abled. He uses history to help readers comprehend what life is like for those with different abilities. Even though the book is over 25 years old, it still offers keen insight into the lives of differently-abled people and the value they bring to the workplace and society.

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