Happy New Year! In last months New Synergist Insights I talked about the power of organizational diversity. One myth that I hope was dispelled in last month’s Insights is the concern that organizational diversity is a problem. Organizational diversity is an opportunity to create a superior competitive position that will allow your organization to sell additional products and services and generate more revenue.

Diversity myths include:

  1. Diversity is about race and gender. Diversity is a strategy that should support the creation of a well-balanced team of individuals with the skills, knowledge, and experiences to create competitive advantage. Race and gender are only two of the multiple focus areas for a diversity strategy.
  2. Organizational standards will decrease. Diversity strategies should be focused on hiring and retaining the best and the brightest; hopefully those hired will have diverse experiences. Diverse teams can enhance problem solving and innovations. A sound diversity strategy will not lower standards. Organizational standards will actually improve if talent and diversity is managed effectively.
  3. Diversity is exclusionary. Diversity strategies work well when they support inclusion. If one or more groups of employees feel excluded steps should be taken to remedy their concerns. This is one of many areas that can be supported by the use of analytics.
  4. Human Resources is responsible for Diversity Strategy. One of the problems with many organizational diversity programs is placement in the organization. While support from Human Resources is essential, support for diversity is the responsibility of all employees.
  5. Diversity is an EEO program. Diversity is an organizational strategy to improve performance and competitiveness. Strategies, including diversity programs, need to be proactive, take advantage of demographic changes, and help to create a culture that is both responsive and innovative.

Organizational diversity is a leadership strategy that is common among leading organizations and they have created “Vice-President for Talent Management and Diversity” positions. Call me if you would like to know how to integrate talent management and diversity into your strategic planning process.

In next months New Synergist Insights I will discuss an important aspect of diversity due to changing demographics; Managing “Millenials”.