Why promoting diversity in your workplace could be your key to success

BY Bella Zhang |

No matter what kind of business you are running, when you have a good team, you’ve got a great basis to build your business. If you are wondering how to build a good team whilst minimising expenses and time, promoting diversity in the workplace might be a good solution.

Today, Australian society is more culturally diverse than ever. This creates a massive opportunity to harness diversity for both business continuity and enrichment. Diversity and inclusion covers multicultural, Indigenous Australians, as well as people with disabilities, multigenerational and those from the lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender and intersex communities.

Workplace diversity is generally recognised as a positive thing. Most organisations recognize the benefit of reflecting the community they serve and it is a good practice that helps an organisation to function better. 

Organisational Benefits

Smart businesses that sponsor diversity stand to benefit in both tangible and intangible ways. Diversity means that focus is put on the importance of collaboration and understanding.  This can put your business in a good position to embrace a more diverse, globalized economy. By embracing diversity, you may become more agile and open to change. 

Become an Employer of Choice

A business that becomes known as a fair and equitable employer will have a better chance of attracting and retaining staff from a wider pool of qualified talent.  Plus, a diverse workforce can lead to increased staff retention thanks to team members feeling included and valued.

Increase Productivity

A diverse workforce can create a more cooperative environment that could lead to increased morale and productivity, giving your business a competitive edge.
There’s evidence to suggest that women can be more productive when supported by flexible working arrangements. By becoming a progressive and flexible employer you could give your business the edge with increased productivity.

Creativity & Innovation

In today’s competitive online marketplace, innovation and creativity are important. Whatever game you’re in, you can benefit by embracing different experiences, cultures, genders and ages. A diverse workplace is an innovative workplace.
By celebrating differences in the workplace, your business can encourage people from a wide range of backgrounds to problem solve and innovate. These different perspectives, in turn, can help your business benefit from different viewpoints and life experiences.

Compliance Coverage

As society becomes more diverse, it is possible that government will legislate to protect workers from a range of backgrounds. Also, larger organisations are increasingly using their procurement power as part of their Corporate Social Responsibility (CSR) charters to engage with suppliers that embrace diversity.

With more and more immigrants and overseas students moving to Australia, diversity in the workplace will become inevitable. In order to adapt this trend, a survey from the Diversity Council of Australia suggests that employers in Australia can improve their approach to diversity in the following areas:

•    Asian talent in Australia is significantly under utilised—as Australian organisations increasingly navigate the Asian Century, harnessing cultural diversity becomes imperative.
•    Improve flexibility in the workplace – more can be done to assist working parents so they can contribute to diversity in the workplace.

So if your business could stand to diversify, be a leader of change. Encourage contributions from those with experiences that are perhaps different to your company’s norm. Actively advocate for diversity, let your employer know that it’s important to you to have a diverse workplace and take steps to make it happen. This could mean reaching out to different community groups for advice in your industry, taking on new team members with different backgrounds or drawing on overseas knowledge. After all, with diversity comes opportunity. 

You might also like

Helpful pointers to achieving great outcomes from Interns

Employers often ask us what they can do to ensure their intern has a really positive learning experience while adding value to the company. From our experience with 5,000 host companies, we’ve compiled a few simple rules that will help your intern become a valuable member of your team and perhaps even a future employee.

Read more

Team Culture in the Workplace

What makes a good sporting team? What makes a good team in the workplace? There are so many overlapping elements between these two groups. Learn how you can incorporate the All Blacks practices and values to the workplace.

Read more