Studies show that having a homogenized culture where everyone is very similar in age, gender, race, or other demographic characteristics, harms an organization. It certainly makes it more difficult to attract talent; companies lacking diversity are simply not a top choice for the average employee.
Here’s why inclusiveness should matter to your business and what you can do to actively promote it.
Diversity Impacts Your Bottom Line
Diversity matters to your employees. But it should also matter to your business. Here’s why: A study from Boston Consulting Group showed that companies with an above average level of diversity in their leadership teams have higher better margins and greater innovation. The firm surveyed more than 1,700 companies in eight countries across a variety of industry sectors. They looked at gender, age, national origin, education, and more, to determine which companies were more diverse. They then measured each company’s level of innovation by looking at the total revenue from new products over the past three years. Unsurprisingly, companies who were more diverse, and whose leadership were more diverse, showed greater levels of creativity and innovation.
Diversity and inclusion are also critically important for employees who are in non-leadership positions as well. A Deloitte study showed that 72% of employees would leave their company for one with a more inclusive culture.
While it may be easier to feel comfortable when everyone around you looks and thinks the same, the research shows that diversity of thought and action that spurs companies on to greater innovation. While diversity is important to everyone, it must start at the top and permeate throughout an organization.
Defining diversity is more than checking boxes on an EEOC form, and creating a diverse culture means more than just race or gender. The goal of true organizational diversity matters to employees because it brings a group of people together toward a common goal that take different approaches to solving problems. Empowering these employees to speak up and share their voice is an important way to let everyone in the organization know they are welcome and positive contributors to what your team is trying to build.
Harvard Business Review reported on our efforts to build a diverse workplace, stating:
“Superficial words and platitudes are insufficient – as evidenced by the 75% of employees we surveyed who see diversity programs in place but feel no effect. Leaders must build a clear case for change and set concrete goals, prioritized in concert with their diverse employees.”
The organization found that employees want companies to apply the following efforts to build a more diverse team:
- Carefully crafted and consistently followed antidiscrimination policies.
- Effective training to increase cultural understanding.
- Removing biases from promotion and evaluation decisions.
Workplace diversity fosters mutual respect and a spirit of collaboration among all employees. Companies that have a firm commitment to diversity also have less trouble attracting and retaining top talent.
Add Talent to Your Team with the Help of Select Resources
Talk with your Select Resources team about your specific diversity initiatives. We can partner with you to help your company achieve its diversity and inclusion goals.