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August 28, 2014

The Importance of Diversity in the Workplace

Business

Jeff Cochran

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The time-honored practice of comparing a business or an organization to a body is popular because it is so effective. Without all of the individual parts working in concert with one another, the body will not function properly. The same is true of a business; the best businesses are made up of unique parts, each bringing different talents to the workplace. Simply put, the most successful businesses are the most diverse.

Diversity in the workplace is far more than just a PR or HR statistic. It can drive widespread economic growth and financial success for individual companies. Drawing from a wider pool of applicants will give your company more widespread and varied expertise. This will allow for a greater diversity not only of race or cultural background, but of beliefs, training, and upbringing. The following are a few of the reasons diversity is so important:

Negotiations Training_Diversity In the Workplace

  • Better Marketing: By drawing upon the backgrounds of your various workers, you better understand the most effective marketing tools and techniques to reach the largest number and variety of people. Your workers can help you better understand a wider market, and thus greatly increase sales.
  • More Personal Customer Service: When you have a diverse workforce, you create the means of effectively communicating with a wider range of people. By having workers who can speak multiple languages and understand multiple cultures and customs, you can help widen your customer base. A company with great diversity will be more successful, as customers will be more satisfied with the service they get from workers who share their background and understand their first language.
  • Higher Worker Retention: Statistics have shown that “diverse employees are three times more likely to leave an organization than non-diverse workers” for a variety of reasons. One of the most important reasons is because diverse workers in a non-diverse company feel out of place. Like being last picked on a sports team because the team needed one extra player, being a worker who was hired only for his or her diverse background is not conducive to feeling appreciated.
  • Diversity Breeds Competitiveness: When employees are drawn from a wide pool of candidates, it makes the job opening much more competitive, and allows a company to hire only the most qualified candidates. Furthermore, having higher levels of ability among workers means employees will continue striving to improve, keeping themselves and their skills useful and relevant to the company.
  • More Innovative Workforce: If a company hires workers exclusively from a graduating class at one specific college, then that company will only have employees trained in the same manner. A company with workers from different backgrounds will be able to find more effective solutions to problems because its employees have such varied training and backgrounds. This improves the company’s productivity and competitiveness in the market.
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