Diversity is critical in enabling companies to innovate and adapt in a fast-changing environment and is essential in their growth and prosperity. Diversity brings diversity of perspectives, experiences, cultures, genders, and age to which can in turn breed innovation which is essential for business success.
Differences between employees include visible and non-visible factors, for example, personal characteristics such as background, culture, personality, and work-style, size, accent, language etc. There are also a number of personal characteristics are covered by discrimination law to give people protection against being treated unfairly. The ‘protected characteristics’ are race, disability, gender reassignment, sex, marriage and civil partnership, pregnancy and maternity, religion and belief, sexual orientation and age.
Managing diversity is about valuing everyone as an individual. It is important to recognise that a ‘one-size-fits all’ approach to managing people does not achieve fairness and equality of opportunity for everyone. People have different personal needs, values and beliefs.
The most successful Companies will focus on embedding the principles of diversity in their culture. It is not something that should only be used and adopted by large organisations. Truly successful and innovative companies are those that build diverse teams when they are just starting out. Diversity is a mentality, not just strategic necessity.
In simple terms, a workplace that reflects the population will understand its clients better, which will lead to improved service. A diverse workplace will have good communication with its clients based on a deep understanding of the needs across the sector.
Companies that value and capitalise on employee diversity have productive and fulfilling workplaces which help them attract and retain employees. This leads to savings in recruitment and training costs, as well as maintaining corporate knowledge and expertise.
Simple HR can help you with your role in promoting the principles of equity and productive diversity in employment practices.