Workplace diversity and inclusion are essential parts of any organization and have several benefits. Diverse workforces have higher productivity, innovation, performance, and more. The best way to achieve this is by creating a culture where everyone feels comfortable and included. This includes hiring people from different backgrounds, encouraging employees to speak up when they see something wrong, and making sure there are opportunities for all employees to learn new skills.
Here are five important statistics to know about diversity and inclusion in the workplace:
- About 38% of executives believe CEOs are primarily responsible for diversity and inclusion initiatives.
Diversity discussions are important to every level of seniority, however, there is rarely clarity on who exactly is responsible for initiating these talks or taking action in hiring with diversity. Most executives believe in diversity in the workplace, but generally believe that the CEO is the person who needs to take action. Though other members of a company may be interested in learning more about diversity, most simply rely on the CEO to make diversity initiatives happen. Most executives tend to not push this concept unless the CEO or an equivalent makes it known that diversity is part of their mission statement and culture.
- Companies with racially and ethnically diverse executive teams have a 36% higher likelihood of financially outperforming companies with little or no diversity.
Diversity at work extends beyond race and ethnicity, and this focus is something that seems imperative to success. By hiring racially diverse employees, companies are able to learn and work together. Employees with different cultural backgrounds have a wider viewpoint on how to problem solve and, most importantly, deliver a service or product that appeals to all (culturally and racially diverse) people. Customers will often pay attention to the culture of a company when deciding where to spend. Seeing a company that treats its employees with respect and fairness makes consumers more likely to patronize that business.
- About 41% of managers say their busy schedules prohibit them from implementing diversity and inclusion initiatives.
Most CEOs and high level executives are balancing many things at once. Many executives might see diversity in their company as just another box to check without understanding how much of a priority diversity should be. While it is true that the heads of large companies have a lot on their plate keeping the lights on, diversity should be recognized as the asset that it is. Even if a company is solely interested in growing profit, diversity in the workplace is still a net positive because diversity tends to lend itself to greater productivity and a bigger bottom line.
- About 67% of job seekers said a diverse workforce is important when considering job offers.
A prospective employee applying at a new place of work seeing a mostly homogeneous environment may get nervous, especially if they feel they do not fit in. Not only do new hires expect to be accepted by their coworkers, but they also understand the importance of an accepting workplace to their quality of life and productivity. Companies that place an emphasis on diversity tend to provide a better work environment in other ways as well.
- Some 50% of multicultural women are thinking about leaving their jobs in the next two years because they believe both their gender and their race make it harder to advance.
Point blank, people will not stay where they do not feel appreciated. Eventually if employees are treated poorly and unfairly, they will leave. Equality is essential and it should be a founding principle that extends to all employees. The principle that if one performs well and follows the general rules and guidelines they should receive equal opportunity for advancement no matter their race or gender identity is the foundation of a thriving workplace environment. Without it, companies may lose valuable employees.