Diversity and inclusion (D&I) are terms that are becoming increasingly more important in the workplace. Every company from the largest to the smallest is looking at their policies. Many are putting new measures in place to ensure that they are giving greater consideration to the diversity of their workforce.
What is diversity?
You have probably heard the term diversity used. The question is do you really know what it means? Diversity refers not only to a person’s race but also considers factors such as gender, age, ethnicity. It also encompasses sexual orientation, religion, education, disability, and even socioeconomic status.
How can small businesses benefit from diversity?
By improving their approach to diversity, a small business can benefit greatly. There have been studies that have shown that when a company has a more diverse workforce, they will perform better on a number of different indicators. This can have a positive impact on the company on every level.
When a company has a decision making team who are more diverse then they are far more likely to reach, and potentially exceed any of the financial targets that they have made. This is because their skills pool is far more diverse. It will contain individuals who bring a wider range of skills to the table.
Every company wants to be able to not only recruit new talent for their business. However, they also want retain their valuable employees. One thing that many employees (current and prospective) consider is the culture of a company. Being a part of a diverse workforce is more important than ever to a growing number of individuals. It can be a key factor for many when it comes to accepting a job or remaining in their current one.
When your workforce is more diverse, they bring a much greater wealth of innovation to the table. They bring ideas that might be routed in their own individual life choices, their cultural upbringing or are simply related to their age. They have different skills as a result of their educational backgrounds. It is this huge melting pot of talent that can really help to give a company the edge when it comes to being the most innovative in their field. Put simply; diversity can drive success.
How can you improve diversity?
In order to improve your diversity you need to evaluate your current diversity status, no matter how small your business is. Look at your competitors in the same field, how are they doing on this front?
Once you have done this you can use the information that you have gained to establish new diversity objectives for your company, there are the positive changes that you will plan to make in order to create a more diverse company. This might be reflected in how you plan your next recruitment or even identifying those often underused minority-owned businesses that you can use when it comes to buying services and products from. You may choose to invest in diversity training so that your employees understand all about diversity in the workplace.