It should! And, possibly, it might even be more important than it once was. Allow me to offer an explanation.
Every company appears to be cutting costs, reducing staff and doing anything possible to lower its operating costs, as if they are in total survival mode. That is understandable, considering the economic meltdown that occurred. However, I wonder how much thought or strategy was invoked while reducing staff as it relates to positioning themselves for future success.
I believe that diversity can be part of a strategy to help your company grow. Whether we are talking about full-time employees, contract workers, or supplier diversity, all can be positively leveraged to contribute directly to your future expansion plans.
Specifically, if you are trying to establish your product or service in new markets, new countries, specific cultures, or are marketing to specific age groups, etc., having a diverse base of employees and suppliers can significantly contribute to faster execution and ultimately help in achieving your goals.
Having a diverse employee base provides instant access to various backgrounds, cultures, experiences, environments, and points-of-view
Trying to solve a problem within a homogenous group might have one answer, and solving that same problem within a diverse group may have multiple answers, possibly resulting in more expedient, more cost effective, or other creative approaches
Working with a diverse supplier base can provide the same leverage when companies are seeking solutions
Can you grow without diversity? Possibly you can. However, diversity is an ingredient in the overall recipe. Without one ingredient you can still make a cake, but the cake won’t be sweet without sugar, won’t be chocolaty without cocoa, and won’t be tall without baking powder. Even if you have all the ingredients, adding something different, something you haven’t tried before, can really turn your cake into something special.
I have always believed that one strength of America is our diversity. So many different people and so many different groups have contributed to the overall success of America and its history. It’s America’s story. It is that very story that leads me to believe that a focus on diversity in the workplace can only lead to a stronger, more resilient and prosperous company.