As we've seen over the past couple of years, nothing is set in stone. The future is uncertain for almost every industry and many employers are scratching their heads trying to figure out how they're going to prepare for obstacles they can't even characterize yet. Your business needs to implement measures to deal with any and all hurdles thrown its way to ensure its continued success. Workplace diversity is proving to be one of the biggest factors in determining whether your organization thrives or dies. Here's why:
Undoubtedly, the best way to tackle unforeseen challenges is to have as much input as you can when attempting to resolve unanticipated issues. Having a diverse workforce from a wide variety of backgrounds means that employees can bring in fresh perspectives. Harvard Business Review has found that cognitively diverse teams are able to solve problems more quickly than cognitively homogenous teams — that is, people from different walks of life solve problems in unique ways that can speed up the process and make it more effective.
As Forbes explains, another added bonus of a diverse workforce in times of economic uncertainty is that your organization will appeal to both current and new employees. As the world of work and employees' expectations change, workers will start bouncing from one employer to another to find the right fit for them (in fact, it's already happening). It's becoming common practice for job candidates to research how diverse an organization is so that they can ascertain whether they'll be compatible.
In the age of the internet, it's incredibly easy to run a quick search to see what former employees have to say about a company's culture when it comes to equity and inclusion. If employers want to enjoy the benefits of low employee turnover and acquire and retain skilled workers, they must ensure that their organization is diverse enough to be an attractive prospect to people of all ethnicities, genders, ages and sexual orientations.
The defining feature of a capitalist economy is competition. As consumer demands evolve rapidly, businesses need to ensure that they're designing products and services their customers want not only now but also in both the near and far future. To do this, an organization requires high levels of innovation. Like problem-solving, businesses that have a diverse workforce get to reap the benefits of incorporating varying perspectives when developing their business offerings.
A diverse workforce also means that employees are better positioned to understand customers in their respective markets. As consumer expectations continue to change at breakneck speeds, it's vital that an organization has workers who grasp different consumers' different demands if it wants to survive in a tumultuous economy.