The Business Case for Diversity – Competitive Advantage
There are of course a whole host of moral reasons why discrimination in the workplace is wrong however in this article we wanted to highlight the business case for managing a diverse workforce effectively.
At Circle Squared we try and monitor diversity indicators such as gender pay gap and the composition of boards and senior leadership however this information is frequently unavailable. We would love to encourage more businesses to publish this info and be transparent with the public especially when there are such compelling reasons to embrace diversity.
Getting the top talent
Talent is evenly distributed amongst the workforce yet discrimination is still an issue. This means that business that creates diverse welcoming environments and have non-discriminatory selection procedures will gain a competitive advantage.
How does that work? It works because where discrimination exists there is a latent pool of untapped talent. Where minority or excluded groups are passed over in selection processes it means that more of the talent is left behind within these groups that remains underutilised. Thus, businesses that are great at managing diversity will get a competitive advantage over poorer performing rivals.
Preventing Group Think
One of the most potentially damaging things to a business is a lack of consideration of all the potential options. A diverse workforce is more likely to generate a more wider range of views from which the best options can be selected. Diversity then implies innovation at least at the thinking level and helps prevent the damaging group think of a mono-cultural team that eventually leads to stagnation.
Serving a Diverse Customer Base
At Circle Squared we mainly focus on the relationships between consumers and retailers. Here in London, we are rightly proud of our diverse heritage and communities. It stands to reason, therefore, that to best serve a diverse group of customers an equally diverse workforce may be required. Cultural competence is so important its best to have this knowledge in house.
In short, get ahead by getting diverse