The issue of gender balance touches nearly every corner of our lives – there is a collective demand for balance in politics, business and in our personal lives. But in the case of companies, gender balance should not only be addressed for the sake of equality, but also for the sake of performance.
The rapidly expanding global economy has prompted the growth of work teams comprised of individuals from diverse backgrounds with different values, experiences, perspectives, knowledge, and skills. Greater diversity in the workforce can positively impact organizational outcomes, including performance. Understanding the advantages of workforce diversity helps you establish an organization with a competitive edge. But companies can only fully leverage the power of their diverse employees by creating comprehensive, thoughtful and fully integrated diversity and inclusion initiatives that encourage engagement and align with the ultimate goals of the business. Creating an environment where inclusion is the expectation and people feel welcome, safe and able to contribute fully will result in heightened innovation, increased productivity and greater organizational effectiveness.
Last week I had the privilege of attending the fifth annual Clinton Global Initiative (CGI) America meeting. The event brought together nearly 1,000 leaders from business, philanthropy, and government to develop solutions for economic growth, long-term competitiveness, and social mobility in the United States.