As the United States, as well as many other parts of the world, struggles for acceptance of diversity, as leaders, the success of our organizations depend on that very diversity. The very things that we see in others that cause many to fear, and some to even hate, are the very things we need to face new challenges in a new and changing world. We no longer operate in an isolated environment; now that everything we do is on a global scale; diversity plays a bigger role than ever before. We need to value diversity of thought, diversity of perspective, and diversity of background. So, where is your diversity?
At the top?
If I were to look at your management team, would I see diversity? If your management team is all cut from the same fabric, always of one mind, your results will be limited to what that one mind can comprehend. This usually results in maintaining the status quo and limiting any forward movement that is progressive or innovative.
At the table?
If I were to look in on your operation meetings, would I see diversity? If you do not encourage a diverse variety of voices to take a seat at the table, your organization will develop tunnel vision. Who is to say how many opportunities you will miss out on when your vision is limited.
In the ranks?
If I were to walk around your organization, would I see diversity out on the floor? Every one of your employees need to feel included and a sense of community. I hope your community does not all look and think the same. I also hope that the lower ranks are not the only place where diversity is evident in your organization. This limits diverse input and influence as well as cripples your organizational culture.
Front and Center
Diversity is needed at every level of the organization to really be affective. You need it at the top in members of your management team. You really need it at the table where new ideas and solutions to problems are being brainstormed. And, you need it in the ranks where everyone is respected and accepted for the personal value they add to the organization. You need your diversity front and center. If I were to enter your organization would I find evidence that you value diversity of thought, diversity of perspective, and diversity of background? Or would I see one way of looking, one way of thinking, and one way of behaving around every corner? Put your diversity front and center starting today!
© 2017 Elizabeth Stincelli
Liz Stincelli is passionate about recognizing and inspiring the leader in each of us. She is the Founder of Stincelli Advisors where she focuses on helping organizations change attitudes, change communication dynamics, improve collaboration and problem-solving, engage employees, and strengthen organizational culture. Liz holds a Doctor of Management degree with an emphasis on organizational leadership.
Learn more about Liz by visiting her website, stincelliadvisors.com and connect with her on Twitter @infinitestin, Google+, and LinkedIn. You can contact her by email at firstname.lastname@example.org.