During the last few weeks I've sent out emails to my network seeking people willing to be audience members for a PBS program I'm headlining. I included a request for diverse audience members. A dear friend wrote back "I'm ready and willing but I'm a white male". I was so surprised at his comment. When I use the word 'diverse' I mean a representation of all groups.
Time and again companies, organizations and entreprenuers wonder what does diversity mean to them. All too often it is about compliance. Diversity is about profits and productivity.
Here are some questions to ponder. Are you missing opportunities to:
Serve your customers more effectively?
Design new profit centers by creating niche products?
Market your products more effectively?
Enhance employees' productivity?
You are if:
- Your staff is not diverse (a microcosm of your community and clientele)
-You are not using your current assets - your employees - to suggest new opportunities, new products, new ways of reaching niche groups
- You do not ask different employee groups what they need to be more productive, how you can serve their needs more effectively, ask them what skills can they bring to the table that you don't know about and ask how you are doing as a manager, c-suite leader or boss.
White men are just one group to reach out to. In my experience here are some of the diverse groups that white men represent:
Parents, veterans, athletes, various religions, inter racial/ethnic couples, single, married, older, gay, straight, left brain, right brain, liberal, conservative, religious, not religious, southern, northern, eastern, western, Hispanic, African, European, and many other groups.
Every company should expand their company to include a many diverse people as possible through gender, ethnicity, age, religion, experience and affiliation. Then use those qualities to enhance business.