Despite the recent wave of nationalistic and protectionist sentiment that has swept our political landscape, having a diverse leadership that includes women, minorities, immigrants and members of the LGBT community is going to be a key for companies seeking to achieve high levels of growth. Research has shown that although it’s hard to quantify, companies that exercise two-dimensional diversity tend to innovate and perform better than companies that lack 2-D diversity.
When applied to leadership, inherent diversity which is defined by our biological traits and acquired diversity which involves traits gained from experience, can help break the homogeneity of the current decision making process and inject it with breadth of perspective that accounts for globalization, shifting demographics as well as unmet needs in under-leveraged markets.
Although businesses have made a concerted effort in recent years to address diversity, it’ll be some years before we see those efforts bear fruit especially in STEM related fields as well as at all levels of management and leadership. In the meantime, to address the gap in diverse voices, companies and even educational institutions can turn to applications like IdeaScale to hear a wider range of perspectives that may not necessarily be represented in the boardroom.
University of Michigan is one great example of institutions striving for better diversity & inclusivity. Last October, the University introduced a five year strategic plan for Diversity, Equity and Inclusion after a 12 month process that also included collecting feedback via the Be Heard campaign launched on the IdeaScale platform complete with a video promo and full backing of the University president who launched the initiative.
As businesses navigate their path towards meaningful diversity, engaging their existing communities using an innovation solution software can help them address the concerns and opportunities they would otherwise miss.
This blog post is part of a series authored by IdeaScale employees. It showcases how they’re thinking about crowdsourcing and innovation as part of their daily routine. Feel free to ask questions or make comments.
This post is by Beni Kebede, Innovation Architect at IdeaScale