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Diversity in Ecosystems

Ecosystems with high biodiversity, are more productive and fortified against annual fluctuations in environmental conditions.  Ecosystems with low diversity struggle to survive. These are the key findings of environmental scientists at the University of Zurich. Their 2017 study included approximately 450 landscapes harboring 2,200 plants and animal species. You see, ecological biodiversity is needed for complex ecosystems to function.

There is a clear parallel between the diversity of ecosystems in nature and corporate ecology. When there is diversity in nature, landscapes thrive. When there is diversity in the workplace innovation and productivity thrive. A recently published article in HBR revealed that in order for diversity to be effective, employees need to buy into its value rather than just hearing some rules about it. When an organization believes in the value of diversity, beyond just believing it’s a requirement, positive benefits will result.

Beyond Gender Boundaries

In order for an ecosystem in nature to reach its full potential, a variety of life is needed. When companies attract and retain a diverse workforce including men and women, people of color, and people from other cultural backgrounds they are more likely to experience better-than-average profits, according to a  study by McKinsey.

Since this topic is not new and has been spoken of for decades and more recently on a weekly and almost daily basis, why aren’t more companies, perhaps even your company, not improving the diversity of their workforce? As you read this, you may think, “But what can I do about it? You can’t change people!” You’re right! Changing a person’s behavior is hard, but not impossible.

Top Reasons to Make Diversity a Priority Include:

  • Employee engagement
  • A more desirable place to work
  • Drive innovative ideas
  • Reduced legal risk

Companies are told that if they train their people their diversity will improve. However, a recent Mercer study showed that training by itself is not enough. Companies use training as a reactive measure after a discrimination complaint and to show good corporate citizenship. This was demonstrated last year when a global hot beverage brand closed its doors for an entire day to train its staff on discrimination and ways to practice being more diverse.

Training is Not a Means to an End

Training brings awareness but diversity awareness will not last unless we practice it daily, weekly, and yearly.  Today, humans are better at creating good habits when they use technology to modify their behavior. The desire for better habits has helped fuel an entire industry of wearable technology. Wearables tell us when to stand up, when to go for a walk, and even when to go to bed. These are simple tasks and yet we still use technology to remind us and keep us focused on taking care of our health.

Our organizations, our recruiters, and our hiring managers will benefit from technology to create habits of making better complex decisions involving conscious inclusion. Technology exists today that will make job descriptions more inclusive and redact personal information from the resume for blind resume screening. Technology has simplified a complicated psychological process, enabling hiring managers to focus on KSAs rather than the noise of gender, race, or ethnicity bias. Check out TalVista’s Recruiting Suite for an all-in-one solution for conscious inclusion decision making and the path to achievable and sustainable diversity recruiting and hiring.

Biologists make conscious decisions when managing a natural environment resulting in thriving flora and fauna. They use technology to track what is working and make consciously inclusive decisions on how to improve the diversity of the ecosystem. Companies too, will benefit from technology to make better conscious inclusion decisions resulting in greater diversity, improved employee engagement, better profits, and reduced legal risk.