We are living in a world that is becoming [has become] increasingly connected, companies are looking to sell their products and services all over the world in order to generate the maximum amount of revenues possible. Diversity is now a Business Imperative where corporations need to be harnessing the full skills and competencies that are to be found in all employees.
The forward thinking companies found throughout the world make sure that the relevant structure and processes are in place throughout the organisation to ensure that employees that find themselves in the minority dimensions of diversity such as …
- Sexual Orientation
- Religious Beliefs
… and others; get the chance to use their skills for the benefit of the corporationat large. Whilst working for Hewlett Packard in my Marketing Management role, I was asked to get involved with the Diversity Program and ended up being involved with shaping the European as well as the U.S. Diversity Strategy for Hewlett Packard. This included making preparation for the very 1st Diversity Conference for Black and Minority Ethnics – my contribution was recognised globally and above you can see notice of the commendation and stock options that I received from the then MD of Hewlett Packard Europe.
As a Business Strategy consultant – I often get asked to comment and input on various aspects of the operation of the business which at times involves helping to shape the diversity component of the complete business strategy.
If you happen to be reading this as a Human Resources Representative, Manager or Business Owner in need of input in the specific area of Diversity Strategy – feel free to get in touch to see how we could possibly work together.
Stephen C Campbell
Whilst working in technology marketing management for one of the largest and most respected computer companies in the world I acted as chair of the European Black and Ethnic Minority employee network as well being involved and liaising with the Diversity team in the United States. Being based in the United Kingdom it was indeed fascinating for me to see how in many respects the corporate Diversity program for my colleagues in the United States was far ahead (years) when compared to the program which we were implementing in the United Kingdom and the rest of Europe. Indeed we have no Affirmation Action here in the United Kingdom and were not affected by some of the political and legislative pressures that were being experienced by my counterparts in the United States.
As my career progressed I was promoted to manage a section of the Far Eastern business based in Japan. I spent most of my time in Japan, about 80% with the rest of my time being spent managing the business in Taiwan, India, Korea and the other countries in the region for which we had business interests. Hearing of my experience with Diversity I was soon contacted by the local Human Resources team in Japan and quickly got involved in the Diversity initiative there.
More on this exciting subject which is critical to the success of any organisation operating within our global marketplace today.
Stephen C Campbell
Often within organizations the question is asked (by varying sections of the workforce) “why are we bothering with Diversity”? The point being, “things have not been so bad up until this point so why divert time, energy and money into this thing called Diversity which only seems to be in existence to help certain sections of the workforce” and often can be interpreted as acting as a career progression disadvantage to the employees who come from the dominant sections of the workforce.
Today more that ever there is a need to establish the business case for Diversity and to ensure that the message is passed down throughout al levels of the organization.
Above is a snippet of an interview between myself and Nadia Saba
Head Of Diversity for Avon & Somerset Police
It is fair to say that Diversity is often greeted with a certain amount of skepticism and doubt, is normally ‘owned’ by the Human Resources department whose task it is to ensure that Diversity is implemented throughout the organization.
In some cases the individuals with the Human Resources who are tasked with rolling out the program may not be fully up to speed with Diversity themselves and with the root cause as to why it is essential in today business landscape to have a coherent Diversity program which is understood by all within the organization.
This is where establishing the business case for Diversity comes into play, it moves the emotional aspect out of focus and gives employees the ‘real reason why it is so important for their organization to have a coherent Diversity strategy in place i.e. it is down to the effect on the bottom line business results as the company continually strives to establish its competitive advantage over and against the other companies operating in the same market space.
More on this in an upcoming post.
Stephen C Campbell