Major companies such as Apple, Slack, Tesla, Google, and Netflix have committed publicly to Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion (DEI) statements and initiatives. These companies have the resources to invest in anything, so it’s telling that they have chosen to put their money and efforts into diversity and inclusion.
In fact, DEI is so important at top companies that it’s become a key part of business. Google gathers one of the largest datasets about diversity and inclusion in their sector and they share it openly. Allan Thygesen, President of Google’s Americas & Global Partners, calls diversity at Google “essential.” Netflix’s DEI strategy is closely linked to its company purpose: “We create and connect stories to people all around the globe. In order to tell these wide-ranging stories and make them accessible everywhere, we need employees from different backgrounds and a culture that celebrates those differences.”
About 40% of companies have a DEI strategy, and that number is growing. It’s industry leaders heading the charge, too, and making DEI integral to their business rather than a box to check off. Companies are making DEI part of their hiring processes, brands, and the employee lifecycle. Leaders clearly know there is something crucial here.
How Are Diversity & Inclusion Different?
Diversity refers to representation within a leadership group, organization, community, or other population. For example, if a company has workers living with disability, men and women employees, team members who are part of the LGBTQ+ community, and people of various ages and backgrounds, it is diverse.
Diversity alone is not enough, though. To retain a diverse group together, you also need inclusion. Inclusion means making sure all people within a space or organization feel valued and heard. It means everyone gets to contribute and feels welcome. Inclusion helps create diverse spaces. It ensures that everyone gets a voice and a place at the table.
Why Is Diversity & Inclusion Important?
Our world is changing. The 2020 U.S. Census shows that between 2010 and 2020, the Multiracial population (defined as those who identify as being from Two or More Races) grew by 276%. In that same time period, the Hispanic and Latino population increased by 23%.
There’s an incredible opportunity here—but only if we approach change with inclusion in mind.
Creating a diverse society works when we include all people and give a voice to everyone. When we exclude some individuals or entire groups of people, we’re not just excluding them. We’re also leaving out their passion, creativity, talents, skills, and abilities. When we embrace diversity and inclusion, we create a richer society and better communities. We have more opinions, more helping hands, and a wider range of ideas.
Why Is Diversity & Inclusion Important in Business?
We may understand diversity and inclusion are important in communities, but what about the business world? Some industries have seen low levels of diversity (especially in leadership) for decades, and have succeeded in the past.
But what has worked before is not going to work now, and the most forward-looking companies are recognizing that diversity and inclusion are important for many reasons:
It’s the Right Thing To Do
Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. said “The time is always right to do what is right.” It’s the moral, ethical thing to reduce barriers & to give everyone an equitable chance to succeed in their careers.
It Connects Companies With the Wider World
Companies don’t exist in a vacuum. A clothing store may be located in a neighborhood with a racially diverse population or with residents who are older or living with a disability. Creating a workplace that reflects this neighborhood can help you positively impact people who may be walking by your doors. A diverse workplace can also help you serve your customers better.
It Shapes Our Collective Futures
There are many ways to make money, so when people start or run businesses there’s usually some larger goal in mind. Founders & leaders want to leave a legacy or make an impact. One way to positively impact future generations is to start addressing the systemic barriers some people have faced.
When you create inclusive, equitable, & diverse workplaces, you’re addressing the wage gap & employment inequality. You’re giving people economic power through work, so future generations may see less poverty. You’re also creating a positive workplace, so you help normalize working in an environment where everyone is valued.
Diversity & Inclusion Improve Profits
Companies are 33% more likely to see top-of-their-sector profitability if they have culturally & ethnically diverse executive teams. Diverse companies also see 19% higher revenues than their less-diverse counterparts.
Talented Workers Demand It
An ADP Research Institute survey of 33,000 workers in 17 countries found that 76% of employees would consider quitting their company if it didn’t have a diversity & inclusion policy or if their company had gender pay disparity. The same survey found that 83% of workers ages 18-24 would quit if their organization had no diversity & inclusion policy. The ADP Research Institute concluded that diversity & inclusion is a “make-or-break” issue companies can’t afford to ignore.
It Means Better Results
Having people from different backgrounds on your team can mean more solutions and innovation. In fact, inclusive companies have a predicted 59.1% higher probability of achieving greater innovation. And a strong DEI strategy can mean better employee engagement. For example, 83% of millennial workers report feeling more engaged in inclusive organizations.
How Can You Get Started?
If you’re starting to understand how mission-critical DEI is to the future success of your business and to the very reason you started your organization, what are the next steps? Once you realize that there are business reasons and personal reasons to embrace diversity and inclusion, know that you don’t have to get everything perfect immediately or do this alone. Diversio is a woman-owned, people-first business. We provide solutions to support companies, governments, and portfolios in creating measurable, sustainable change.
When you partner with Diversio, we bring you the solutions you need to create a DEI strategy designed for your unique business. Our AI-Powered DEI platform is the first of its kind. Thanks to our extensive research and our team of experts, we can help you gather, analyze, and benchmark data. Our Recommendation Engine™ can suggest the field-tested next steps you can take to address gaps and pain points. If you need a public-facing way to show your commitment, Diversio Certification shows you’ve done the work to make a change.
Diversio is data-driven, so you act on information, not hunches. At the same time, our focus is on gathering data and using it so you’re empowered to take action. If you want to see all the solutions Diversio offers, book a demo today. We’d be happy to show you what we can do.