Increasingly, corporations are embracing DEIBAJ (Diversity, Equity, Inclusion, Belonging, Accessibility, and Justice) concepts. However, in the corporate world, adopting any new initiative at some point revolves around proving its business case. DEIBAJ makes financial sense because it is important to customers, reduces turnover, and, perhaps most importantly, increases revenue.
The aim of DEIBAJ is to promote equity and inclusivity in the corporate world, creating meaningful opportunities for marginalized individuals, including women and people from underrepresented communities. This objective aligns with the shifting paradigms in the business landscape and client expectations. Whereas in the past, clients emphasized an enterprise’s ability to provide high-quality, cost-effective products or services, now, they also seek to associate with businesses that champion diversity, equity, and inclusion.
Build Stronger Teams
Building strong teams relies on the ability of companies to collect information, analyze it, and gain valuable insights that can improve their business. However, in many cases, valuable ideas are not expressed due to a lack of inclusivity in the workplace. Companies can create a more collaborative and comfortable workplace by fostering an inclusive environment that promotes empathy and respect for others. This will ultimately lead to increased employee openness, interest, and support, resulting in high-performing teams. Psychological safety plays a crucial role in building these teams, as it enables employees to express their authentic selves, leading to more active minds, increased energy, and greater engagement. By creating an environment that encourages participation and diverse perspectives, companies can unlock the full potential of their workforce and achieve greater success.
Homogeneous teams often have a sense of complacency, and their thinking follows familiar patterns. Their reasoning and problem-solving are limited because they stay within a select range of parameters and experiences.
Differences among team members force each person to recognize that there will be alternatives and unexpected viewpoints to consider and evaluate. Therefore, reaching a consensus takes more eﬀort. People must work to communicate their own thinking, broaden their own views to consider others’ perspectives, and they dig deeper into the challenge.
The process requires more work but produces better results. Differences among team members create more alternatives. Therefore, they recognize and respond better to new market opportunities. Diverse teams process information more carefully and discover more possibilities. They better appreciate unmet market needs and that expanded awareness produces a wider variety of possible choices.
Businesses run by culturally diverse leadership teams are more likely to develop new products and services than those with homogenous leadership. When at least one team member shares a client’s ethnicity, the team is more than twice as likely to understand that client’s needs than teams where no member shares that trait. Companies with above-average diversity on their management teams generated innovation revenue 19% higher than those with below-average leadership diversity.
Build a Stronger Workforce
Nowadays, many organizations have trouble finding and keeping talented individuals, which becomes a drain on the organization. Turnover costs employers 50% of an entry-level person’s salary; for more senior executives, 50% to 250% of their salary, which for an executive making $125,000 would mean $312,500.
Creating and maintaining a welcoming and inclusive culture makes talented people want to join: 80% said that inclusion was important when choosing an employer, and nearly 40% of employees said they would leave their current organization for a more inclusive environment. In sum, embracing diversity makes finding and retaining talent easier for a business.
Employees who do not feel comfortable at work underperform – and they recognize it in themselves. The average American worker considers themselves a mere 50% engaged.
DEIBAJ initiatives break down barriers and create more open communication. In an inclusive and collaborative environment, employees feel valued and give back to the organization in kind. Because employees feel part of something, they commit to it and work harder. Workers with the highest level of engagement perform 20% better. The positive change in attitude manifests itself in other areas. A sense of belonging produces a 56% increase in job performance, a 75% reduction in sick days, and a 50% drop in turnover.
Embracing DEIBAJ Boosts Financial Performance
Diversity improves the bottom line. The most diverse companies are 35% more likely to have above-average earnings in their industries. More specifically, companies in the top quartile for gender diversity on executive teams were 21% more likely to outperform on profitability and 27% more likely to generate superior value creation, while those in the top quartile for ethnic/cultural diversity on executive teams were 33% more likely to have industry-leading profitability.
DEIBAJ Work Needed
Business leaders are aware that they are not doing enough to promote diversity. Only 16% of corporations rate themselves as excellent for recruiting a diverse workforce. Even fewer, 15% felt their companies were excellent in developing diverse executive talent, and 83% believed
that companies should do more to promote gender and racial diversity. Recognizing a problem is a step, but only a step, to fixing it. More needs to be done, including increasing budget spending on strategic planning and programming projects. It’s not enough to say, let’s make some changes; companies must be committed with dollars.
Businesses are trying to create more diverse workforces for both ethical and financial reasons. However, the process is still fairly new to some, and most organizations continue to struggle with it. However, the ROI is becoming clearer: diverse enterprises are more collaborative, effective, inventive, and profitable than their counterparts. In essence, the numbers say that embracing DEIBAJ creates stronger, more financially viable businesses, which is the goal of every management team.