Many leaders understand that it is important for them to recognize diversity in their workforce. However, do they really understand why it is important? Is it about public appearance and internal perception? Are they satisfying some need or demand from the board? Are they just giving lip service with no actual change taking place at all? It is not enough for a leader to talk about diversity. Some real action must take place. Diversity in the workforce can be defined by having many differences in gender, color, nationality, and thought. A workplace or meeting with employees who all look the same, think the same, and act the same will have only one conclusion – that would be one that has no variation of thought in coming to a conclusion.
Think about a meeting that has discussions that include employees from different lifestyles, various parts of the country or the world, and are a different gender and race. The outcome may or may not be the same, but that conversation that got you to that conclusion would have had so much more diversity in thought and probably would have more thoroughly covered the way that many people felt about the issue. Our world is made up of all kinds of differences and that is what makes life so interesting. The workplace is a microcosm of life and without acknowledging and honoring the differences at work, it may be a pretty boring place to commit your time.
– Bob Hummel
Bob Hummel is a former VP of human resources at Citizens Energy Group.