Having a diverse workplace provides a slew of benefits ranging from increased creativity and productivity to increased job retention. Furthermore, multiple studies published in Gallup, Scientific American, and MIT consistently support how diversity in the workforce improves the overall business and financial outcomes. However, despite this strong evidence, many companies fail to look for diverse candidates in their hiring. Therefore, a lack of diversity is prominent in almost every industry. The multiplicity of a company shapes that organizations culture. As more businesses adopt diverse hiring, the chance that team members will embrace the company’s culture increases, which produces a more effective company.
Defining a Diverse Workplace
What comes to your mind when you first think of the term diversity? Most people think of the traditional definition involving differing race and cultural backgrounds. However, diversity in the workplace should be defined on a broader scale. This new definition includes differences in gender, race, ethnicity, age, sexual orientation, disability, and employee background. Furthermore, an employer should not treat a diverse workforce like a bingo card that has different squares to check off. A diverse company puts aside quotas and “the perfect male to female ratio” to hire diverse employees based on merit and experience.
Benefits of Diversity
Birds of a feather flock together. This statement means that if you have an employee workforce that lacks diversity, then it limits your business success because, instead of coming up with new and novel ideas, similar people tend to hinder creativity and stick with the status quo.
However, although we often share commonalities with other people, we are all our own person. Everyone brings new and different things to the table that can benefit a business. By working alongside people of different backgrounds, working styles, and experience, more innovative concepts can be bounced off each other. It also allows for more productive feedback and suggestions that can help bring this idea to life.
By working alongside people of different working styles, backgrounds, and experiences, creative, out of the box ideas can be created from bouncing thoughts off of each other and offering productive feedback and suggestions. Where one individual may be skilled in producing new and exciting, another person may possess the necessary skill to implement it. Therefore, it is essential to utilize different skills and to collaborate with other team members.
Talents and Skills
By hiring people with diverse backgrounds, it introduces new talents, experience, and skills to the workplace. It is vital to hire skills that fit into each niche of the company. While crossover skills are important, it is also imperative to hire people with new talents. Having a variety of experience allows employees to learn from each other, which creates an overall stronger workforce.
Furthermore, Harvard recently published a study on “two-dimensional diversity” in businesses. They found that the companies with at least three inherent diversity traits performed better financially because they had a wide range of skills and experience to be effective competitors in the business market.
Increase Global Opportunities
While language and cultural barriers may seem a little intimidating in a company, it is an excellent asset for companies that are looking to globalize. In an age where technology is continually growing, the world becomes increasingly smaller. Having employees that speak different languages and understand different cultures allows your company to connect with a broader client-base and make your company more relatable.
According to the Labor Department, more people are quitting their jobs in comparison to the data gathered in 2008. Furthermore, many people stated that their company wasn’t supporting diversity enough as their reason for leaving. Working in an environment that accepts all backgrounds and promotes equality is very important, and it fosters retention. In multiple surveys, scientists found that approximately 67% of employees weigh diversity as a significant factor when deciding where to work. This number increases drastically in minority groups as well- 72% of women, 89% of African American, 80% of Asian, and 70% of Latino respondents. In an environment where the employer places inclusivity is a top priority, employees feel more confident in their abilities, and the team morale increases exponentially.
Furthermore, increased retention allows you to avoid finding replacements through the expensive and tedious hiring process. Many successful companies implement internal programs, networking, and resources aimed to support their employees and their interests. In doing so, they create a tighter and more invested workforce.
Increases Talent Pool
When a company embraces diversity in their hiring, they have a wider range of candidates with a large variety of skills that can improve the work environment. As the number of applicants rises, so does your chances of finding an exceptional candidate. Talent is a vital baseline factor that allows your company to prevail in the ever increasingly competitive economy.
Additionally, since people rate diversity as a top factor when determining where to work, an environment that prioritizes inclusivity will make your company a desirable location in the job market.
Having a diverse workforce improves customer service because employees have a large variety of skills that allow them to better connect and relate to customers. For example, if you have an employee that speaks a different language, they can communicate and build connections with customers who also speak that language.
Furthermore, being able to connect and relate to your customers improves your marketing techniques, so they cater more to your target market.
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Resources: https://theundercoverrecruiter.com/benefits-diversity-workplace/, https://www.linkedin.com/pulse/diversity-workplace-principle-driven-approach-talent-pool-dan-burton/, https://emplo.com/blog/advantages-of-diversity-in-the-workplace#.W7te6mhKg2w, https://www.entrepreneur.com/article/240550
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