Updated: Jul 6, 2020
Remember how "organic" was a buzzword for a few years? Well the new buzzword is "Diversity." Problem is, diversity is serious business. Nothing cute or trendy about it. We’re not talking about oranges here, we’re talking about human beings and the importance of celebrating differences. I’m hugely disappointed in major corporations like Sephora and Starbucks that design diversity training programs only in response to discriminatory behavior after they get bad press or blown up on social media. Why are so many companies arriving late to the game? Does embracing diverse work environments change company culture? Yes. It absolutely does. And it's for the best!
Most people immediately go to race when they hear the word diversity, but that’s just scratching the surface. The advantage is that no two people think exactly alike and, guess what, customers don’t necessarily think alike either. A company rich in diversity has employees from all ethnicities, genders, religions, cultural backgrounds, economic status and uses those differences to their benefits. The truth is that the future is bold. It’s mixed. It's bi-racial, foreign and transgender individuals, young geniuses and even gangsters turned businessmen. Now that description may make your skin crawl, but it sounds like a winning team to me!
So if diversity is good, why are so many businesses ill-prepared to handle interactions with people that are different? People are being openly mistreated in places they're purchasing from mind you, simply for being of color, transgender or just different! Do you see a problem with this? I surely do. Have you ever had to live in a shelter or lost everything? Most of us probably haven’t. But try hiring someone who has been homeless at one point and see the tremendous value they bring on patience, understanding and humility. I don't necessarily recommend making this person the CEO of your company, but be open to a new way of thinking.
Diversity is not just about color, it’s about mentality. So get your mind right and get on board. The moral of this story: diversify your team. Properly train your them to handle people from all walks of life, crazy, I know. And hell, you all may learn a thing or two.