Broad-sweeping workplace diversity is among the primary focal points of mainstream business. Not only is it the correct approach for a host of moral and socially progressive reasons, it also just so happens to be phenomenally good for business. While these subjects may seem to come from widely different perspectives, the result is the same, as McKinsey’s report on Delivering Through Diversity demonstrates conclusively: those companies that rank highest in ethnic and racial diversity in the composition of their executive teams stand 33% higher in reaping financial returns above the national median for their given and respective industries.
While diversity has been on the radar for some decades now, there has never been as dedicated a focus on the matter as today. While in the past, the issues tended to revolve almost solely around discrimination, stereotyping, and generally addressing a host of negative and harmful conditions, a great deal of attention now is being given to the very real and financially tangible benefits embracing diversity in the corporate workplace brings.
To this end, a campaign that launched in the summer of 2017, known as the CEO Action for Diversity and Inclusion, hosts as its centerpiece the bringing together of organizations the world over (and across the spectrum of industry) to take a firm pledge in actively promoting diversity in the workplace. These leaders have committed to having the hard conversations and not flinching away from shedding light on uncomfortable bias. One of their greatest efforts emerged by expanding education and sharing best practices, both within and without their industries.
While not the most intuitive of subjects, with a little thought it is easy to see how expansive diversity in the boardroom can have a profound impact on a company’s profile. Bringing people together from a wide variety of cultures, backgrounds, and walks of life in general is guaranteed to produce far more exceptional results than a purely homogenous setting. This principle has proven to be true time and time again.
In specific citation, we note a Harvard Business Review article, which goes to show that organizations with “two dimensional diversity” drastically outperformed their direct competitors.
A company thrives upon a multitude of factors—most especially true in this digital age—but one of those still standing strong after centuries of business acumen is an organization’s touch with its market. The world today is an incredibly diverse place, and a company’s image in the mind of their primary demographics must reflect that.
Not only will having a publicly diverse platform (or “face”) outperform their common competition, but such efforts are proven to help a company capture a bigger market share. As we noted before, a company that remains overzealous about maintaining a homogenous profile will inevitably lose out in almost every noted category.
Few indicators of a good company culture are as demonstrative as a turn-over rate. Taking a look into the Tech industry alone, we can cite a study done by the Kapor Center for Social Impact, in which they showed that negative workplace culture drives an incredible degree of turn-over, costing the industry over $16 billion each and every year.
Taken at a wider angle, this study surely reflects that of a disturbingly widespread prominence; not only of outright discrimination, but general unfairness, managerial bullying, stereotyping, and a dozen other factors most often cited for reasons individuals jump ship and never look back. Much as some leaders would like to think otherwise about their own companies, the fact remains that upwards of 78% of all employees claim to have experienced one or more of these factors in the workplace.
In summary, it’s not terribly often that the “right thing to do” aligns with what is most profitable, but we are happy to note that this is very much one such case.
The clever executive always makes sure the company’s message and processes are aligned towards an inclusive culture, from the top down.
Stewart, Cooper & Coon, has helped thousands of decision makers and senior executives move up in their careers and achieve significantly improved financial packages within short time frames. Contact Fred Coon – 866-883-4200, Ext. 200