Education, experience, work ethic, and proven track records are often the main factors businesses evaluate when selecting candidates to join their team. The objective is to identify the most qualified professionals to help organizations meet or exceed their goals. Although these aspects are essential during the selection process, some establishments overlook the significance of diversity.
What Is Workplace Diversity?
A diverse workforce is a business that employs individuals of varying genders, ages, races, ethnicities, sexual orientations, and other characteristics. Diversity also encompasses team members from various educational, professional, and experience backgrounds.
Why Diversity Matters?
A company’s values and beliefs are essential to its operational success. Just as countries that cater to a specific demographic or audience are least popular and unproductive, businesses that don’t consider diversity and inclusion will find it challenging to reach their ultimate goals. However, a diverse workforce reaps benefits such as those listed below.
- Varied Perspectives – Whether implementing policies and procedures, streamlining processes, or providing customer service, there are different perspectives or approaches to accomplishing a task. A diverse team provides multiple insights into how to improve operations to achieve better outcomes.
- Creativity And Innovation – If your team comes from similar backgrounds, lifestyles, and experiences, it limits creativity and innovation. However, an inclusive workplace that encourages unique perspectives fosters a creative environment that leads to innovations that propel the company forward. Teams can express ideas, voice concerns, offer advice, and ultimately develop solutions that maximize productivity, performance, and service.
- Team Member Engagement – Engagement is best described as an employee’s effort and commitment to an organization and its goals. When a company focuses on diversity and inclusion, it causes team members to feel heard, valued, purposeful, and included, encouraging them to engage.
- Higher Employee Retention – The hiring process is an essential yet tedious and expensive process. If you invest the time and effort into hiring an individual, the last thing you want is to have them quit. While competitive salaries and benefits are ideal, modern professionals are interested in finding companies that make them feel valued and appreciated. When team members are happy, they tend to work for an organization until retirement.
- Competitive Edge – Your company is only as successful as the team you have backing your organization. As a diverse workforce brings forth varying perspectives, experiences, backgrounds, and innovations, it also provides a uniqueness that separates your brand from the rest.
How To Improve Diversity
Now that you understand the significance of diversity and inclusion, the next step is developing practices to improve. Below are some suggestions to consider.
- Evaluate Existing Workforce – When you review your team members, do you notice diversity, or does everyone come from similar regions, backgrounds, and experiences? How does your company acknowledge, appreciate, and accommodate team member differences if you have a varied workforce? Often the best way to find answers to these questions is to ask your team if they feel adequately represented and supported. If not, consider ways to make positive change.
- Acknowledge And Eliminate Shortcomings – Discovering that your company has certain biases or discriminatory practices when hiring and managing staff is difficult. However, being willing to learn about different cultures, change the language or tone of company policies and contracts, or offer flexible conveniences to accommodate team needs, says a lot about your brand’s integrity and reputation.
- Expand Your Candidate Pool – Building a diverse workforce means being open to hiring team members from different locations. Look beyond your city or state and consider applications from various countries. A global employer of record can assist you in ensuring that you’re hiring the best talent and complying with complex international labor laws. An employer of record can also help you overcome common barriers with international hiring and management, like language, culture, religion, and lifestyle, to provide a more inclusive experience for global team members.
- Diversity Training Is A Must – Develop a strategic method to train existing and onboarding staff on diversity and the importance of acknowledging and appreciating team member differences.
- Celebrate Uniqueness – One of the easiest ways to make team members feel valued and included is to celebrate their uniqueness. Your company should be intentional about celebrating various cultures and backgrounds. Whether hosting cultural events to acknowledge African American, Hispanic, and Asian communities or implementing advancement and training opportunities for minorities, it sends the message that you care about and appreciate your teams’ uniqueness.
No one on the planet is the same. The uniqueness and diversity of each individual make the world go around. This concept also translates into business. If an organization wishes to evolve and maximize its potential, it must start by cultivating a working environment that highlights, encourages, and supports diversity.