Re-examining the business case for diversity
If corporate marketing is the litmus test, there appears to be a high level of business acceptance about the bottom line value of a diverse workforce.
But how deeply held is the belief really? Truth be told – there appears to be a lot of head nodding about the business case rather than a rolling up of the sleeves to take action in a programmatic way. Is there a more deep-seated belief that diversity talk is just that – talk to attract and retain talent – but not a strategy that will add to the bottom line?
This paper re-examines the foundations of the business case connecting diversity to organisational performance. Specifically it reviews:
- The concepts of diversity and ‘inclusion’
- The high level evidence for the diversity business case
- The research that links diversity to enhanced productivity (via workplace flexibility)
- The research that links diversity to performance (via diverse teams).
It also provides some practical ideas for organisations wanting to realise measurable organisational value from diversity.