In response to current social movements such as #BlackLivesMatter and #MeToo, many employers are looking for more ways to embed inclusivity in their hiring practices, discrimination policies and corporate cultures.
It would be a sad mistake, though, to take the attitude that this "must" be done in order to be a good corporate citizen and protect the company's public image. Rather, we in management and HR should be aware that diversity of color, culture, gender and sexual orientation in the workforce can actually drive a company's health and success.
At Integrity, diversity is a fundamental principle in every department from associate recruiting to supplier selection. Here are the top 6 ways it benefits our business — and can do the same for yours.
1. Increased morale and productivity
A happy employee is a more productive employee. And one thing that makes workers really unhappy is knowing that some groups or minorities within the organization don't receive equal pay, status or opportunities for career advancement.
2. Higher quality job candidates
The generations currently in or just entering the workforce expect an employer to share their attitudes toward inclusivity, and won't work for those who don't. Our reputation as a diversity employer helps us attract and hire the cream of the job candidate crop, thus enabling us to provide our clients — and fill our own staff —with the most talented individuals in the industry.
3. Better innovation and problem solving
Studies have shown that diverse groups generate new ideas and solutions to challenges faster than homogenous ones. A variety of backgrounds brings together a wider range of knowledge and approaches, giving more opportunity to choose the best option or meld several into a unique process or strategy.
4. Greater customer approval
Thanks to the more and better solutions provided by a diverse team, organizations are better at satisfying current customers as well as attracting new business. What's more, they have people on staff who can interact easily with diverse customers.
5. Expanded language skills.
It's important for international businesses to be able to speak the same language and understand the cultural practices of their customers. As mentioned in point 4 above, a diverse workplace offers the advantage of having these key contact people already on staff.
6. Boosted profits.
If none of the previous reasons convince you, just look at the bottom line. Check out these some eye-opening statistics from a study of companies who have women in corporate board positions:
Our businesses exist in a society that is becoming more diverse, and more vocal about equal rights for every worker. Those who incorporate this diversity will survive — and thrive.