It’s interesting to observe how we strive for gender balance in our personal lives. We talk about it openly. Couples often want the opportunity and experience of raising both genders. But in the workplace, we find it uncomfortable to talk about gender balance and why we might want a certain mix of men and women on a team. We find it even more difficult to talk about how to do that.
Though it’s human nature, not bad intentions, to surround ourselves with those most like us, we need to break out of that comfort zone to leverage the competitive advantage of gender balance. The cloning effect that continues to occur by hiring and promoting people who are just like us (whoever we are) is bad for business. It creates dominant groups of people who are closed off and get little to no exposure to the thought processes of people who are wired differently or have different perspectives based on their life experiences and cultures.
As an executive leader of your organization, YOU first must become comfortable with having the conversation. The best way to do that is with the facts. There is an entire chapter in my new book, Money on the Table, that will arm you with all of the facts you need to start talking with your leadership teams about the importance of the diversity of thought and approach, and why that’s good for the bottom line. Then, you’ve got to go to work on the action plan, which includes how you will set the tone for this topic within your organization and how you will keep the conversation going.
Find out more about how to start the conversation in Money on the Table, available here.