The Business Case for Diversity

An organization that is truly diverse understands both the differences and similarities in people. Inside the organization you’ll see people from all different backgrounds working together and how a blend of employees adds intrinsic value to the business.

An increasingly global network, due largely to the expansion of technology, people from all different backgrounds, experiences and perspectives are all coming together to work in various capacities. Virtual connections have significantly increased the capabilities of doing business.

A more diverse business environment is rapidly developing through e-commerce, customer service practices, supplier relationships, outsourcing, partnerships and merges to name a few. As a result people are exposed to differences.

Businesses who embrace diversity go above meeting the confines defined by the law because they recognize the advantages from a both a business perspective and from a social one. They understand diversity shouldn’t divide employees, but instead unite.

There is a strong business case for diversity because companies who are genuinely diverse and invest resourcesin diversity initiatives have found lower turnover rates, and less discrimination lawsuits brought against them for sexual, race and age discrimination.

Additionally, what we all have heard before is: People who are diverse in culture, background, social class, gender, age or religion all bring something different of value to a company because of different life experiences and perspectives. Each employee helps shape a unique perception on work projects, processes and issues because of the differing backgrounds. These distinct viewpoints help businesses grow because of the innovative ideas inspired by diverse viewpoints.

From the social perspective, investing in diversity initiatives means equal practices for all people within their organization without exercising positive discrimination either is the right thing to do. Organizations that have become intensely aware of the value of diversity and from a humanistic point treat everyone equally and with the same respect.

A great case for this is made for example in the commented book, Womenomics while being careful once again of maintaining objectivity; As I mentioned before, exacerbating differences in a superficial way is too one sided. Only genuine appreciation for the unique value different people bring to business will drive growth and could in some cases become a key driver for organizations to operate in a true synergic and organic way, and this kind of adaptability is of utmost importance for those that want to be successful in the future.

What has been observed though is that companies which invest resources in diversity measures experience strong levels of growth. It has been proven customers like to see themselves represented within the companies they do business with, so in addition to the other business and social reasons for diversity, the market base is a high consideration and strong argument for diversity as well.

Also traditionally known… Diversity naturally drives innovation because the differences in ideas, incentives, knowledge base and experiences all promote new inspirations and initiatives. When people who work together think alike, this good to an extent, but it is the challenges which make a company grow.

Businesses which hold strong conviction and dedication to diversity illustrate they recognize the value and advantages that naturally follow diversity. The committed company celebrates the differences which exist amongst different backgrounds and realizes the worthy contributes people all bring to their organization beyond the obvious differences.

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Filed under Business, Change, Human Resources, Innovation, Society, Sustainability

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