Our thoughts, views, and experiences
Companies undertaking a “transformation” are ubiquitous today. But when you look deeply into whether these organizations are truly redefining what they are and what they do, stories of successful change efforts are exceptionally rare. According to Gartner Group, “The failure rate is often as high as 65 to 75%.” The primary cause of failure they say is “failure to anticipate and effectively manage cultural change.”
Every business has a corporate culture ingrained into its operations, like it’s DNA. At its core, culture is a collection of agreed-upon ways of doing things that develop over time as people learn what works and what doesn’t. It’s an invisible force that creates shared values and behaviours among its workforce. An organization’s culture shapes everything that takes place in its environment: How people interact, how things get done on a daily basis. Culture can be both positive or negative, and responsible for either corporate success or failure.
Transformations that focus on people and foster diversity and inclusion are increasingly being used to drive productivity and profits to outperform competition. Diversity does not just make good business sense but diversity in the workplace is known to also increase innovation and problem-solving. “Diversity leads to more efficient and effective organizations.” according to Whitfield, Farrell in the Journal of Diversity management. “Diverse, well-developed supply chains can help companies reduce costs, enhance innovation, successfully integrate acquired businesses, and reach new markets.”
In services industries that are heavily dependent on their people to support customers, like financial services, technology, and retail - a diverse and inclusive workforce provides benefits that are not only critical to thriving, they are critical to surviving. Cumulative Gallup Workplace Studies reports that companies with inclusive cultures have +39% customer satisfaction than those that do not.
The evidence speaks for itself: companies that build and nurture cultures of diversity and inclusion are more innovative, better problem solvers, have improved access to talent and are more successful. These companies also tend to become employers of choice. Today’s workforce is more attracted to a diverse and inclusive workplace, and corporate cultures that are more aligned to their personal values. Salary being less important than corporate values and the manner in which the organization is perceived externally, by potential customers, media, and consumers.
Cultural diversity and inclusion have become a key corporate imperative. Companies that have not seriously looked at addressed and continue to address cultural diversity and inclusion across their enterprises will fall further behind their competitors and may eventually lose their market relevancy. Very often it’s viewed by leaders that looking at cultural diversity and inclusion are expensive but it’s much more costly in the long run not focus on this game changer.
What is Diversity and Inclusion?
The term diversity covers a wide range of dimensions that differentiate groups and individuals from one another. These include aspects of which most employers will be aware - age, race, gender, sexual orientation, religious beliefs, and physical ability -- and other factors such as parental status, marital status, political beliefs and even interests.
Current economic and social trends are encouraging more organizations to adopt diversity and inclusion. These include increased globalization of business, with clients, suppliers, competition, and talent coming from other countries. Also, the changing values of today’s workforce, including diverse workforces, corporate reputation and work environment holding more attraction than traditional incentives like salary and medical benefits.
Harnessing the Power of Inclusion and Diversity
We understand that creating a diverse workforce is not about filling a quota or running an ad that includes a photo of diverse people in it. True diversity starts with a mission to gain strength through recruiting a variety of outstanding people, vendors, and partners. It ends with your company empowering their employees to play their own unique roles to contribute the most. Our advice, start with goals that will help not only build a strong, diverse team – but retain and engage them too:
Moving Forward - Where We Come In
There is a greater need for diversity and inclusion as transformation becomes more ubiquitous in companies. As organizations and individuals better understand what good cultural diversity within the workplace looks like, the pressure to get it right will increase. It’s a positive trend. It brings an ever-brighter spotlight on the importance and benefits of a cultural diversity and inclusion and there is not an issue in history that has not benefitted from the debate and focus light can bring. But there are challenges that we commit to helping your team better recognize, and find targeted solutions and successfully address them.
To discuss the ideas presented here, please contact us:
About K2 Digital
K2 Digital offers business strategies that provoke new thinking, creating and executing upon well-defined digital roadmaps that meet corporate objectives and accelerate growth in an increasingly complex, connected world. Our focus is to drive results by balancing the inseparable organizational components of digital experience and digital operations - to engage customers, empower employees, optimize operations, and develop smart & "right-time" products and experiences.