There is no end to the benefits of diversity in the workplace; this has been documented by leading academic institutions and organizations. The Harvard Business Review, well-known for its integrity and zeal, has published numerous accounts. Once an ‘initiative’ that leading companies were commended for, it has now become a necessity for organizations across the world.
Diversity in the workplace is no longer something that should be looked at merely from a political or social perspective, but from a larger global perspective that is relevant and required for businesses to thrive.
HR strategists, company CEOs, and business leaders have learned that the most productive workforce is one that has a team with cognitive diversity and, more importantly, an inclusive attitude to absolutely everyone.
DEI (Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion) initiatives are a top priority in the current times. Here are five Fortune 500 companies that make it to the top 20 in terms of diversity:
What you will notice is that these companies have always championed diversity. It has been a core part of their core philosophy, and it can be derived that the benefits of diversity are clear to see from their success.
That these names are on the list, does not mean that your company, however small or distant from Fortune 500 listings it may be, doesn’t have to take diversity and inclusion seriously.
What Does Diversity in the Workplace Mean?
Diversity in the workplace is when employers, with intent, hire individuals from varying backgrounds and with a range of attributes. This is common knowledge; however, reports reveal that not enough is being done to achieve true diversity.
Forbes reveals that 57% of managers accept that they aren’t doing enough. 41% of them say that they are, in fact, too busy to be able to implement such initiatives. This is quite a staggering report, considering the importance and relevance of diversity. Especially given that the same article states that companies that have an inclusive environment are likely to have a 35% better bottom line.
Decision-makers have to make more of an effort to make diversity a part of an organization’s culture. It must be so ingrained into every aspect of your organization’s workings that it must be a culture and indeed a way of life.
In theory, diversity shouldn’t have to be implemented; it should be a default act. However, owing to the reality in which we live, we rely on creating impactful and transformative company cultures to reap the benefits of diversity in the workplace.
5 Benefits of Diversity in the Workplace
1. Boosts creativity and innovation
If your workforce is diverse, the more creative it is likely to be. This has to do with access to various types of knowledge, cultural diversity & upbringings.
For example, a company with a goal of achieving sustainable agriculture will do well to have agricultural scientists, B.Sc. Agriculture graduates, and farmers who may have no formal education, but a treasure trove of experience and knowledge. They are likely to bring in ideas that these well-studied individuals may not have even considered.
2. Builds company culture
Job seekers are very tuned into what is right and wrong. Many want to work in organizations that value diversity and inclusion, and equally have a strong ethical pull. How your workplace makes employees of diverse backgrounds feel is important for being able to attract talent and also contribute to employee engagement.
3. Brings more perspectives to the table
Having diverse teams ensures that you have more perspectives. This aids in problem-solving and finding new ways to do things better.
4. Increases collaboration
People want to learn from other people. This is also essential for employee growth and business growth. And what better way to learn about things you don’t know than by working with someone with a completely different set of skills and background than you? Diverse teams foster improved collaboration and arguably better results.
5. Improves productivity levels
People from diverse backgrounds have different ways of working. When put together, it is natural for people to gravitate towards behavior that your organization considers positive. This means that if you put a set of people together who have different performance levels, you are likely to achieve an overall improvement in performance, and as a direct result, your productivity increases. Gaps in knowledge, or rather differences in knowledge, help team members to want to improve. This nurtures a company’s objective of improving employee development.
Workplace diversity can take your company culture to a whole new level. Using a performance management tool like Mesh can help you leverage the performance of your diverse and distributed workforce. Book a free demo today!