Hiring a Diverse Team Can Make your Business More Profitable
Diversity in the workplace is not a new concept, and recently, it’s been a buzzword on many companies’ lips. And whether people want to admit it or not, there is a stigma around workplace diversity and inclusion that is never spoken about – and that is the fact that many company executives and boards don’t take the time to truly understand and implement a strategy to diversify their teams. It’s more than just a feel-good phrase to put on paper. It requires hard work, a willingness to learn, and real change for both employers and their employees. Workplace diversity has more benefits than just appearances. It can actually help your business become more profitable in the long run.
Let’s start at the top of the totem pole: C Level Executives and Leadership teams. Many companies may not give much thought to diversity at this level. Lack of diversity is built in so deeply at higher levels that no one questions it. But we should. 68% of C-Level Executives across the board are Caucasian Men. 68%. That is a staggering statistic because, if you think about it, there’s one group making decisions about services and products that affect people of all genders, races, and cultures. Many products and services they may not even use. Makeup. Feminine Hygiene Products. Hair Care. The list goes on.
It’s surprising that diverse gender and race representation at the leadership and executive-level doesn’t spark an ‘aha!’ moment when it comes to bringing in revenue. Top companies with ethnic and culturally diverse leadership teams were 33% more profitable overall, while companies in the top quartile for gender diversity outperformed less diverse businesses by 21%. Why might this be? Diversity encourages innovation. Different backgrounds and experiences breed different thought processes, which often results in more opportunities for a brand. Not only that, but for brands that have a specific audience, diversity can change the marketing strategy from an educated guess into a plan that gets results.
Diversity vs. ‘Cultural Fit’
The success that diversity brings doesn’t just apply to executive and leadership teams. In recent years, companies have chased the ideal ‘culture fit’ for their teams, which has led to hiring for personality traits in place of embracing diverse teams. And while hiring the candidate who has the ‘best attitude’ or who ‘clicks with the rest of the team’ might seem like a good idea in theory, this tunnel vision approach might mean you miss out on a diverse candidate who is experienced and creative in favor of one who understands how to socialize. It’s also easy for hiring biases to develop behind the facade of the perfect ‘cultural fit,’ as employers have started to misuse this reasoning to hire those who they deem acceptable and fun. This thinking results in hiring managers and leadership gravitating towards more of the same.
Prioritizing cultural fit over diversity can also be uncomfortable for existing employees. Employees who might not necessarily fit into the monoculture can be uncomfortable showing their authentic selves at work. A lowered sense of confidence may affect morale at first, but eventually, it can start to affect productivity and teamwork as well. And a lack of productivity results in a lack of revenue.
Don’t be fooled – it is important to hire individuals that are aligned with company values. But true diversity should be fairly weighed in hiring decisions as well. Companies that have embraced diversity and hired different types of people to add to their culture performed 35% better than those who were solely after culture fit. Again, innovation is the key here. Providing education and training to diverse candidates can encourage new ideas, boost collaboration, and increase a company’s profitability and value.
57% of employees want to see their company increase diversity.
– WhatToBecome.com; Diversity in the Workplace
Gender, ethnic, and cultural diversity can have a profound impact on a company’s success. So why aren’t we seeing more of it? The answer, surprisingly (or not depending on who you ask) has to do with not making the time. Earlier in this post, we touched on putting forth the effort to truly understand the meaning of diversity and inclusion. Nearly half of all managers (41%) say that they are ‘too busy’ to take part in any diversity and inclusion initiatives for their businesses. The fact of the matter is that many companies need to make the investment to diversify their team – and this requires more than just money. It requires time, awareness of the hiring process, understanding how employees and leadership relate to one another, and a commitment to making company culture inclusive for all employees.
We here at Creative Juice are a proudly diverse hivemind of creatives, employing men and women from all ethnic and racial backgrounds. By embracing diversity and inclusion along with company culture and values, we have successfully worked with companies to help their marketing take them to new heights. Our team also realizes that we can’t do it alone, and we value each other’s unique background and drive to succeed.
Do you have goals in mind for your business? Then take some time to really think about how to diversify your team. You’ll not only come out with a stronger team, you’ll be helping your business become more profitable in the process.