In this 3rd post of the “Beyond the Buzz” series, I’d like to explore with you the diversity and inclusion (D&I) subject as it is very trendy but often seen as just a must do for ethical reasons.

“There should be more diversity and inclusion in your organisation”

As with the issue of gender, there is first a deep concern about fairness and equity, so please start working on auditing your current culture’s biases. They are everywhere: in your recruitment processes, in your assessment and promotion practices, in your communication; and you should know about them. There are so many ways to do this now, so no excuses, period!

And beyond the societal trend and the ethical debate, there is also a strong case to work on Diversity & Inclusion to enable your organisation to thrive in uncertain times.

D&I means more perspectives to approach a problem, more balanced approach to risk, more chances to detect weak signals and the possibility to have a portfolio approach to innovation. 

In the “connect” part of the culture framework, the touchpoints are how the organization feeds itself and learns from its environment. The more diverse the workforce, but more importantly the more diverse the voices we listen to, the more open our 6th sense is (the organisation’s capacity to spot opportunities before anyone else). 

One mind, or a group of like-minded people, cannot stretch their thinking enough to navigate in the unknown. Their blind spots will accumulate. A diversity of perspectives allows for less blindspots, and a better capacity to pivot when needed.

The key for an organisation to benefit from diversity is to develop leaders so they can:

  • Stay constructive even when they are emotionally challenged by resistance;
  • Enable their teams to navigate through their differences by modeling openness and tolerance.

Diversity & Inclusion > Wider array of touchpoints > Detecting weak signals