Don’t Dance Around Diversity, Embrace It!
By Zahrah Isaacs |
If 2020 and the COVID-19 pandemic have taught us anything, it is that ultimately, humankind has to work together in order to survive. The same principle can arguably be applied to the working environment, particularly within online learning where a similar concept is always needed—the concept of diversity in teamwork.
I have experienced this firsthand. With offices, all in several locations of the world, Construct consists of a unique blend of people who are, not only top experts in their field but their diversity aids in what makes Construct and our projects, one-of-a-kind.
Variety of Perspectives
As an online learning and education company, it comes as no surprise that learning is a big part of what we do. We understand that people learn through experience and even more so, shared experiences as such. With over 7 billion people on the planet, the wealth of knowledge we have access to through each other is endless. Thus, having a diverse workforce provides the opportunity for a variety of perspectives to come to the fore. In fact, having diversity in the workplace enables companies to have insight into the needs of the audiences they serve and thus, better create products, opportunities, and experiences that cater exactly to those requirements.
One of the most significant ways to gain perspective and learn is through knowledge sharing. In fact, we at Construct value sharing knowledge and perspectives so much so that we consistently schedule ‘learning lunches’ in our calendars in order to do so.
Increased Creativity & Productivity
Something that is more important than simply acknowledging a variety of perspectives, is the ability to truly understand all of them. When people can relate to issues, challenges, or experiences themselves, it can lead to increased creativity and productivity. A diverse team can often offer more ‘out of the box’ thinking through being able to draw on a variety of perspectives than a relatively uniform team that does not take the time to appreciate the value of diversity of thought.
A diverse workforce gives teams access to demographics, cultures, experiences, and traditions that one might not have been exposed to in a personal capacity. Having this diversity, as well as the knowledge and understanding thereof, can act as a platform for exercising a broader range of creativity. For lack of a better analogy: think the official Olympics logo - various colors, all intertwined, but we know exactly where one ring ends, where the other starts, and, ultimately, it looks really good too!
Better Decision Making
As the saying goes, there is not only one way to fix a problem. That said, the more diverse your team is the more experience, personalities, views, and access to information a company has. Less diverse teams, however, have a limited amount of potential outcomes due to their similar viewpoints. Simply put, the more diverse your team is the more opportunities for effective and creative problem-solving and decision making.
Reduced Fear, Improved Performance
Let’s face it: talking about gender, sexual orientation and race are never easy. Add a workplace environment when these conversations have to happen and you might just hear a pin drop too. This is where diversity can be handy. The more people are exposed to what is “different” the easier these conversations become. In fact, the benefits of a diverse organization will lead to workplace policies that embrace diversity, instead of grudgingly accepting it or dancing around it.
Not only is diversity great for employees, but companies reap the benefits thereof too. Having a diverse team manifests itself in a great reputation for companies and more nuanced forms of problem-solving which could ultimately lead to increased profits. Companies that have diverse talent will not only attract a wider pool of qualified applicants but it will also aid in creating and maintaining a diverse client base.
Beyond the economic benefits that diversity brings to a company, current global and political climates are calling for diversity and equal opportunities in a variety of ways. Ultimately, diversity provides value and opportunity on so many professional AND personal levels, which is why we NEED to be embracing it, rather than dancing around it.
Production Coordinator at Construct