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Why Diversity and Inclusion at Work Matter

Today, we’re reading a lot about the importance of gender equality at work. The same goes for preventing sexual discrimination, combating racial bias, and allowing the candidates with different learning capabilities to find their desired jobs.

However, in real life, things aren’t working out that well.

The number of businesses not complying with the D&I policies is still high. According to Deloitte and The Alliance for Board Diversity, 65% of Fortune 500 companies have about 30% of the board comprised of women and minorities.

Given these stats, it’s clear that the deployment of diversity into the traditional concepts of the workplace is still challenging.

However, it also brings numerous benefits to the table.

Here are some of them.

Diverse Skills and Talents Improve Workplace Performance

The research done by Harvard Business Review in 2017 proves that diverse teams solve problems and make decisions more effectively than homogenous teams.

This is not that surprising, given the fact that people with different backgrounds will definitely have diverse talents and experiences, which is extremely important for generating out-of-the-box and innovative business ideas. This also means that your staff members will be able to improve their skills and learn from each other constantly.

It Enriches your Company’s Culture and Helps you Understand your Customers

According to some recent statistics, only 46.5% of working-age disabled people were employed in the UK in 2017.

In the U.S. these numbers are even lower. Only 18.7% of people with disability were employed in 2017, according to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics.

Why is this so? Well, people with disabilities come across numerous problems, from a lower salary and inaccessible transport to the ignorance among their coworkers.

Businesses still don’t understand the importance of hiring disabled employees. And, this needs to change as soon as possible.

First, businesses should give all their candidates the same opportunities to get the jobs they’re qualified for and advance their careers. If you’re not sure where and how to choose the right candidate, you can consult a disability employment agency to help you do so.

Second, it builds trust among your potential clients.

No matter if you’re a non-government organization, a B2B or a B2C business, you want to attract as many clients as possible. These are all people with different backgrounds, knowledge, traits, and abilities. And, they expect you to understand their culture and values.

Of course, to meet your clients or customers’ needs, you first need to hire people similar to them.

Hiring diverse teams boosts your responsiveness to a highly colorful world of your customers, improves your ability to handle change, and helps you build and nourish strong relationships with your clients. For example, hiring people with disabilities gives your company an opportunity to target the customers with the same problems more effectively and tailor your products and services to their needs.

It’s Easier to Attract and Retain the Right People

Companies that support employee diversity are often seen as progressive. And, as such, they will manage to attract a wider range of candidates.

Namely, the 2017 report by PwC claims that the majority of employees surveyed highlighted they researched whether a company adopted D&I policies and analyzed the company’s leadership team diversity before they accepted a job position.

Of course, as the number of the candidates for your open job positions rises, you will be given the opportunity to find the right person that will help you grow your business.

Unsurprisingly, parallel with the rise in employee satisfaction, employee retention is also taken to the next level. Your staff members love to work in an environment that values individuality and supports people from all walks of life. For them, this is a clear indicator that they will be treated equally and have the same career advancement opportunities.

It Makes your Employees Happier

When they get a new job, most people want to fit in the team. Being afraid that their individuality won’t be recognized in the right way, they are usually afraid to stick their necks out. Instead, they decide to conform to the rest of their team. This is how the natural diversity within a team is killed and replaced with homogenous groups of people with identikit mindsets and ideas.  

This not only affects the business growth, but also your employees’ satisfaction. This is why employers need to encourage their employees to express their individuality. They need to improve their employees’ sense of belonging, emphasizing their importance to the team.

“Belonging is the feeling of psychological safety that allows employees to be their best selves at work. Even at the most diverse of companies, employees will disengage and leave if they don’t feel included and accepted,” states the 2018 Global Recruiting Trends report by LinkedIn.

People are generally more likely to be happy at those organizations that prioritize the importance of workplace diversity and inclusivity. Such a positive and tolerant workplace atmosphere motivates them to feel self-confident, improve their skills, and achieve their best.

Over to You

When investing in your workplace diversity, keep in mind that it is not yet another source of problems for your business. It’s not something you must comply with to avoid fines. Diversity doesn’t make you treat specific groups of people differently or help people with different skills and experiences at all costs.

Of course not.

It’s about the full implementation of different resources for better end results that benefit everyone- your business, your employees, and your clients.

How do you integrate diversity into your business?

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