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
Diversity is not just a “Feel Good Issue” in fact it may be more of a correct statement to classify Diversity as “A Critical Business Issue” i.e. there is a compelling business case for diversity. Today’s customers have a choice in purchasing products and services and; with the internet enable world that choice is becoming more and more global on a daily basis. In fact, companies who want to be the winners in their market space and particularly those who want to be big winners, simply cannot afford to practice and conduct business with policies of exclusion in existence.
The companies who want to succeed are the ones who take Diversity beyond the Human Resources department and make it a part of the fabric of the everyday business transactions. These companies take Diversity to a level where they become role models to other companies in terms of inclusion as they welcome employees with different styles, different perspectives, different ideas, different passports, different accents and different skin colors into all levels of the business. These employees are welcomed and are used to make decisions, develop products, engage with customers as a matter of course based upon their skill set.
I’ll conlude this thread in the next post, as always do contact me to discuss or if you need my assistance with your Diversity Strategy.
-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