I’ll begin by defining what I mean by diversity. Of course, I am referring to gender diversity, but I also mean diversity of age, background, experiences and ways of working. Decisions at organizations are so often made by a room full of people who went to the same sort of school, have the same networks and probably go to the same gym. How can any organization grow in that setting?
Here are some things to consider:
The most obvious reason diversity pays is that differing perspectives see different challenges and come up with differing solutions. If my background and experiences are different then I can bring fresh ideas or lessons learned elsewhere. Diverse perspectives can keep you from trying to sell ice to Eskimos.
You’ll attract a broader client base.
Diverse thinking, messaging and insight will allow your organization to not only speak to a broader client/customer base; they will find it easier to connect with at least one person in leadership. This common ground establishes rapport and eventually trust.
Diversity helps your team know that they belong. When leadership is all cut from the same cloth, employees can find they are always outsiders. Seeing someone like themselves in leadership roles let‘s them know they are valued and can help retain top talent. That always leads to better financial outcomes.
Look around your leadership table and be honest about who is missing. Then walk out of the conference room and find out who in your organization can bring diversity to your company’s growth plan.