How Diversity Can Improve Business Performance

12th Feb , 2019

Diversity in share portfolios tends to spread risks and access a wider range of possible opportunities. The work force also can benefit from diversity in its people to reduce risks and benefit from the diverse skills and viewpoints that can bring new opportunities and benefits, or identify risks that need to be controlled better. Diversity of people in the business team reduces blind spots in how we operate. The main feature of a blind spot is that you cannot see it and are unaware of its potential, both good and bad. Fortunately, a well-matched business coach or mentor can help you to consider your business from a fresh perspective.

In the modern workplace, diversity is well appreciated and becoming increasingly regarded, as it provides a richness of varied viewpoints. Diversity well-managed can create a balanced and healthy environment which impacts on the healthy performance of the business and the people within it.

Better diversity is also considered extremely important at the levels of the board of directors and the senior management team or executive, with diversity increasingly being recognised as a valuable strategic objective for businesses.

From the Board of Directors’ Perspective

The perceived lack of diversity in board rooms has become a global issue. The days of boards being comprised mostly of men from confined cultural backgrounds are changing, and the valuable contribution of educated and enlightened women and others outside of the confined cultural backgrounds is becoming increasingly recognised.

A well-functioning board needs to have the right skill set, from an industry sector perspective, functional background, relevant exposure, and so on, so that they as a team have the best possible skills and experience to navigate and monitor the business through the decision making processes, needed innovation and challenges that they will face. A business coaching professional from International Business Mentors can help you to consider your board composition planning from an experienced perspective.

Diversity is not just about gender, but wider considerations relevant to the business, such as: gender, age, experience, cultural background, innovative ability, board exposure, business education, industry experience, business connections, ability to think critically, adaptability, soft skills, team work, personality, technological appreciation, public speaking and communication skills, as well as appreciations of strategy, customers, operations, people, supply chains, finance, funding, cashflow management, risk identification, contract law, selling, social media, cyber security, people selection, incentives schemes, corporate governance, politics, performance management, project management, acquisitions, right sizing, shareholder engagement, banking relationship maintenance, and negotiations.

From the Executive or Senior Management Team’s Perspective

The executive or senior management team plays a strategic part in any business to deliver the performance required, implement new business growth strategies and pursue the strategic objectives of the organisation. With involvement in critical decision making, leading people, and managing departments, budgets, staff and other fundamental core business functions, they need to be not only well qualified and performance driven, but able to bring alternative view points for consideration back to the rest of the executive or senior management team. An executive with a wealth of diverse backgrounds, experiences and skills can enrich an organisation and give a cutting edge. An individual executive’s contribution can also be enhanced with a business coach or mentor who can leverage their breadth and diversify business experience.

How Environment Diversity Can Enhance the Performance of Any Team

Complementary and overlapping skills, knowledge, experience and expertise can bring a broad balance to a team. This can reduce risk and increase the innovative process in making business improvements. Selecting members with the right skills from a sector perspective, functional background and exposure to what is relevant to the business are some of the considerations when building such a team.

A good team construction needs to consider its membership from the wide range of diversities available and appropriate for the team to function well. The addition of greater diversity of thought to a team makes it more likely that critical challenge to issues will occur from new angles.

Some of the benefits of a diverse workforce include:

  • More experienced employees can offer frameworks for thinking through various types of problems or opportunities, have a broader view of risks (having been through prior business cycles), have valuable specific and relevant lessons from experience, have broader and possibly deeper skills in certain areas, and have diverse networks to call on for assistance.
  • Less experienced employees can offer a fresh perspective and have, for example, grown up in the technological age as technological natives and will become future business leaders.
  • All people of different backgrounds offer a different take on many aspects of the current business culture seen from their fresh eyes.

A business coach or mentor can help you think through the many different areas where diversity may help your business. From the staff selection process to a supportive role, a well-matched business coaching professional from International Business Mentors can be a valuable resource.

Hire for Performance and Diversity

When considering your workforce, consider complementary skills and the experience new people can bring to the organisation. Regardless of where they sit in the hierarchy of the business, good people are the most important asset. They need to be supported, encouraged and rewarded. You should want them to be motivated, contribute to their potential, and have them want to stay if they perform.

New board members who have enormous potential yet little board experience can be supported by an experienced and independent business coach or mentor who can assist with all manner of board dynamics. Key executives, especially those from different backgrounds, can also benefit from an individually matched mentor or coach who understands their circumstances and knows how best to help them reach their peak business performance.

A diverse workforce should help to attract talent, better service diverse markets, and drive forward thinking. For example, graduates and younger job seekers are more likely to consider an organisation’s policy on hiring a diverse workforce when researching potential career opportunities. If there is no diversity in the talent pool, potential talent may be missed out on.

Achieve a Diverse and Innovative Workforce

International Business Mentors has business coaching professionals who are experienced in helping to build diverse and highly functional teams. They do this by identifying the best possible mix of diversity, then assisting you to build, train and monitor the team.

Our business coaches and mentors work at many levels of businesses according to the desired business outcome and are selected after considering their fit with experience, skills and background. Our mentors and coaches understand the complexities and challenges of business, including creating diverse workplaces.

Call International Business Mentors today to find out how we can help you to achieve this.

“Diversity: the art of thinking independently together.”

– Malcolm Forbes

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