Diversity is an ever-growing and crucial element in today's economical world. Globalization has influenced the interaction between the people, companies, and governments of different nations. It's apparent that the United States and its workforce are both becoming more diverse; times are changing, there is a considerable increase in people of color, women, LGBT individuals, etc. that make a contribution to the communities that we are apart of.
Diversity is a product of an individual's upbringing within a certain environment(s) which develops not only their perception they have upon themselves, but also how they perceive those around them. These differences can be difficult to understand from an outside perspective and can affect interactions within the workplace. This may seem like an issue to every employer but diversity is extremely beneficial for a company, different perspectives will offer different innovative ideas, solutions, and skills.THE ADVANTAGES
Diversity allows a broad spectrum of innovative thought and creativity. People from different backgrounds can tackle challenges with a pool of different thoughts, experiences, and skills. This can also allow individuals to learn from one another, once exposed to new or different tactics, an employee is opening up their minds to not only a different work style, but also to the people they work with and their culture.
A diverse workplace promotes economic growth. The United States is more diverse than ever, with such a substantial amount of cultural groups that make up our nation, their consuming influence is valued and plays as a huge contributor to the economy. The more people from different groups enter the workforce, the human capital grows tremendously. A study found that the increase in women's overall contribution in the United States labor force increased from 37% to 47% within the last four decades, which accounts for nearly a quarter of current GDP.
A diverse workplace can make your company more marketable and inclusive. With the national unemployment sitting at 4.4%, companies are looking at ways to manage high turnover and stand out in an incredibly competitive labor market. It's no surprise that the best workplaces for diversity show higher satisfaction for all employees—and bigger growth, too.
Hiring candidates from a more diverse pool means better equipped and qualified workforce. Companies that reach out to a diverse group of potential candidates will be faced with a greater amount of qualifications and talents, which influences the likelihood of hiring the best candidate within the labor market. Needless to say, the more talented employees a company has, the better the company will perform.IMPLEMENTING A DIVERSE WORKFORCE
It is up to every form of management within a company to approach diversity and the benefits and challenges that can be attached to it. Implementing a diverse workplace is a daunting task, even the tech giant Google has its difficulties with its approach to diversifying the workplace. It's not an easy task and it won't happen overnight, but there a number of practices a company can follow to create and influence a diverse workplace, have a look below for some suggestions:
Do some research! Look at your company's current hiring strategy and assess where your company needs attention and what type of candidates you are looking to target for hiring. Look for opinions within the workplace, interview current employees about how they feel about the company, this could help improve your hiring strategy for future candidates.
Establish a diverse recruitment team. Understand which group your company is targeting to hire and choose a current employee that advocates for a diverse workplace or someone who is already familiar with targeting a certain audience. If you cannot find an advocate or an appropriate advocate, diversify your current recruitment team.
Photo credit: Adobe Stock/Gino Santa Maria
Provide formal mentoring programs within your company. Assign minority employees to a leader within the company, this will allow a dialogue and understanding between those who would not typically interact with one another. If both parties are working for the same goal, barriers will be broken between the two groups which can influence support and encouragement.
Present your company's culture to the public. Not only will you be seeking out candidates for diversity within your workplace, you want minorities to reach out to you as well. Making your company's values and culture visible through social media outlets and on your website will help your search for diverse candidates.
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The process to make a diverse workforce will be a difficult and long journey, but the benefits that it can bring are significant. Diversity makes for a great business, so let’s break down the barriers and watch your company flourish.