Diversity in the workplace implies to having a workforce that features people of distinguished gender, race, cultural background, sexual orientation, religion, ethnicity and so on. While focusing on diversity and inclusion is important for all businesses, not all of them pay heed to these aspects and put all of their emphasis just on maximum revenue generation. Audrey Gellman mentions that even though her company managed to achieve growth, not focusing enough on diversity and inclusion is among her biggest failures as a CEO. To remedy this fact, she, later on, took proactive steps to make her business more diverse.
Contemporary companies should ideally try to attract, develop and retain a workforce that reflects the diversity of the communities in which they operate. Doing so often becomes extremely crucial as having diversity within their teams would put companies in a better position to engage employees, understand and serve customers, strengthen employer brand and create an environment of inclusivity. Audrey Gellman points out that while her company started off with a comparatively diverse range of employees and customers, there still were a lot of gaps in it. Companies shall ideally try to invest more in diverse hiring practices, as well as focus on diversity and inclusion training, to create a workforce that is truly diverse in all regards. Many rapidly growing firms face an issue here, as their emphasis on business scaling ends up overshadowing the cultural aspects of new hires. But so should not be the case. It is time that companies take a more active approach in making their workforce more inclusive, which truly represents their customer base and society as a whole.
Employees reflecting the diversity of the customer base of a company shall be at a better position to understand and integrate the varying needs and sensibilities of its patrons. They would also have the capacity to more effectively integrate customer insights into business solutions. Services and products developed by them subsequently shall be more accurate and be able to competently serve the market needs. Any company shall become stronger as they incorporate team members with diverse backgrounds and perspectives.
When it comes to diversity in business, a large gap globally can especially be seen in the female representation at executive levels. Not many companies put focus on employing women for important positions. Moreover, accumulating capital investment is way harder for a female business owner than her male counterparts. Being a female entrepreneur herself, Audrey Gellman had the first-hand experience with the challenges women have to face in the world of business. Hence, she made it a mission of her company to build a community network for women to gather and connect. While female representation was laid emphasis on by this company, it lacked diversity in various other regards for a period of time. To improve on it, she later created a formal culture code for the company.