Businesses today are increasingly becoming global and have paved the way for numerous growth opportunities in the modern workforce. Today’s workforce consists of people of different ages, genders, races, lifestyles, and religions. Many organizations are fully aware of how the workforce is transforming, and most of them have built an office environment where they value and appreciate differences and diversity.
One of them is SMRT Corporation, a public transport service provider in Singapore. SMRT Chairman, Seah Moon Ming has put particular focus on building a dynamic business environment where support and flexibility prospers.
As national discourse and politics become more divisive and inward-looking, businesses must learn to think globally and inclusively. The first important step to making this happen is to embrace cultural diversity in the workplace to help organizations be competitive on a global scale.
Given the many benefits of a culturally diverse workforce, many business leaders have embraced this global perspective to foster positivity, productivity, and efficiency in the workplace. As a result, diversity turned into a massive trend to help companies build meaningful relationships in foreign countries. To shed light on the impact of workplace diversity, this article will explore how it has become a huge trend in organizations and how it will change the future of the modern workforce.
A win-win situation for employers and employees
When we talk about diversity, this refers to an organization that intentionally implements a workforce consisting of individuals with different cultural attributes and uses those differences to maximize the talent and capabilities of the workforce. If done well, diversity provides countless competitive advantages to organizations.
Companies and teams that prioritize diversity can receive a variety of perspectives, ideas, and learning opportunities. Employees coming from different cultural backgrounds opens doors for inventive and creative solutions by bringing together their experiences, talents, and unique skill sets. Otherwise, a team consisting of people that share the same skills and backgrounds is likely to address an issue in similar ways.
A culturally diverse workforce that constantly works towards creativity and innovation can establish a sense of fellowship, pride, and positivity within the organization and the team. This creates a feeling of belongingness among the group and promotes successful collaboration in company ventures. Every person wants to feel recognized and needed, and diversity can foster this by increasing satisfaction and productivity where everyone’s contribution has a specific value.
Stronger business outcomes
Inclusion and diversity are obviously critical to workplace values but also to the company’s bottom line. In a study by the Harvard Business Review, diverse companies are 19 percent higher in innovation revenues. This shows any management that supports diversity is likely to have better innovation performance than those that don’t.
Diversity, being the main driver of innovation and financial performance, represents a significant upside for companies. Innovation revenues are likely to increase by building the management’s diversity concerning gender, national and industry origin, and career paths. The uplift potential is more significant if an organization widens its cultural dimensions.
According to CMSWire, companies in the upper quartile for gender, ethnic, and racial diversity have around 25 percent likelihood of earning more than other competitors in their respective industries, especially in times of global crisis.
Improved workforce environment
The road towards becoming a diverse workplace starts in the recruitment process. Companies that refuse to change how they recruit people are likely to hire the same sets of people with similar skills, knowledge, and attributes. Expanding recruitment searches to diverse applicants from different backgrounds and ethnicity widens the talent pool and boosts the chances of hiring top talent.
It’s also worth noting that workers today look for companies that value diversity. A Glassdoor survey reveals Asians, Latinos, women, and African-American respondents view diversity as an important factor when finding employment, while Caucasian respondents significantly value workplace diversity. A company that is open to hiring diverse applicants is more likely to have qualified employees.
Trust and engagement will also increase in companies that support diversity. This paves the way for higher engagement, retention, team morale, and profitability. Employees in inclusive office environments tend to be in better physical, mental, and emotional health, which lowers the chances for sick leaves. They’re also likely to trust their company leaders and have higher chances of bringing innovations and new perspectives, which has larger effects on the organization’s revenue.
Having a culturally diverse workplace is one of the biggest assets an organization can have. Employee differences are something every company must celebrate if they want to establish better relationships with their workforce and clients. After all, communities and clients are likely to be attracted to companies that recruit people who they share the same cultural background.