How to achieve unity through Diversity

Published On: October 26, 2015/1.9 min read/

For years now there have been efforts to embed Diversity in organisations. The discussion around Diversity, is mostly limited to Gender. But there is more to it.

First, I prefer to use the term Workforce Diversity and rather focus on the behavioural dynamics of the workforce. Second, I try to discover and understand the differences of the various groups in companies.

Our behavioural patterns are determined by our upbringing, education, friends, news and so on. All this knowledge and experience is stored in our minds and determine our actions. Most of these actions are unconsciously biassed. To be able to work in a divers working environment it is imperative to break through these automated behavioural patterns.

In my view there can be an awareness shift in organisations when differences are no longer denied or minimised. Bringing these various groups (white male, female, LGBT, cultural groups) together and having discussions on their differences and biases and amplifying these differences, will bring about more awareness and understanding. On the longer term this will have a positive effect on the corporate culture of an organisation.

This awareness shift is imperative in these times of change and need for innovation and disruptive business models. An intelligently groomed and composed diverse workforce will be more innovative, more disruptive and more agile. On top of this it will help to understand the buying and thinking patterns of their customer groups better. Your workforce should therefore be a representation of the customer groups your organisation services.

Engraining Diversity in the DNA of your organisation’s culture can only work when the CEO is 100{ad607ac56b04c2ead09729f2e533dc4776290d7c6e8a883c0f7b2c88139ab6aa} committed to Diversity and his direct team is divers. The CEO is the main sponsor of Diversity and creates support and awareness in the whole organisation.   

There is always conflict when there is division; in our minds, between groups, between societies and so on. In a world that is getting more and more transparant and organisations becoming holocratic, unity through diversity will be a catalyst for success.  Helping to resolve this division in our minds is my primary goal in life.

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