Insights

5 Reasons Why Diversity In The Workplace Makes A Big Difference

Monday 8 November 2021

The benefits of diversity in the workplace are becoming increasingly obvious as more and more companies start to make it an integral part of their culture.

At EHE Capital we enjoy the benefits of hiring from a diverse recruitment pool which includes background, ethnicity, gender, age, experience and ability.

To hear my full conversation with co-founder Gary Fletcher, check out episode 26 of our podcast “Extraordinary Entrepreneurs Together”.

In this article, we’re going to look at five ways that diversity can enhance your workforce, including:

  1. Different perspectives
  2. Enhanced cooperation 
  3. Sales
  4. Decision-making
  5. Unlimited recruitment pool.

Different perspectives

In my last business, Cake Solutions, we hired team members from 18 different countries. We had no specific interest in where people came from, but we couldn’t find all the people we needed within the UK. It’s the same for us now in EHE Capital. We want to find the best person for each role, and if that creates diversity within the team, there are even more advantages.

One big benefit you gain from diversity is the different perspectives that form within your company: different ideas, different experiences in life and business, and different methodologies.

What we found is that certain methodologies may be more popular in some parts of the world than others; with a diverse workforce all these good ideas come together within your organisation, improving how you operate. 

 

Enhanced cooperation

The reality was that our recruitment strategy (to hire the right person for the job, from anywhere in the world) also meant that we had a few team members from countries that had been (or were) at war with each other. It made no difference. There was no ill-feeling, no political reaction in our offices. The culture was all about getting the job done, learning and enjoying yourself. The business focus united people; not their race, background or religious beliefs. This led to enhanced team cooperation.

 

Sales

If you are selling at an international level, being able to communicate in a way that is appropriate to another culture makes a big difference. Once you’ve closed that sale, ongoing relationships are also enhanced by the same or similar cultural relations, which in the future brings in more business. 

Gary also has a wealth of experience in hiring diverse teams.  He shared a fourth element that I’m amazed I hadn’t been aware of until now.

 

Decision-making

Gary: “It’s also really important to have a different mix of personalities on the board and at a senior level. We used to have away-days where we would make board decisions quickly, but we had one interviewer, a development executive, who didn’t share much. I had a chat with him later in the day and mentioned that I hadn’t heard his contribution. His reply completely changed my perspective.

He told me that he was an introvert and he needed time to process the information.

The next day we got together again and I asked him for his perspective, and what a difference that made! His input changed our strategic direction enormously, and that was a real shock. 

You have to be careful how you reach success; you need to consider all the available input.”

What Gary shared about introverts and extroverts is a really good point, especially since the software development industry is famous for hiring introverts. Gary and I are both “quickstarts”: we listen to what’s being said and almost immediately make a decision on the spot based on that information.  Our decision is unlikely to change even if we do wait longer. 

If there are people on any team who benefit from more time before reaching a conclusion, we need to consider that and trust that it could help us reach a better outcome.

 

Unlimited recruitment pool

When you have a bias, conscious or unconscious, to any group of people, you’re not doing your business any favours. You are restricting the number of people you are willing to hire and you’ll be missing out on some really good people who could help your business grow. Without a diverse culture, you are holding your business back; forward-thinking business leaders want to find the right person for the role and tap into all those underutilised groups of people who may have been overlooked in the past.

Gary summed it all up perfectly.

Gary: “The very best people don’t come in a vanilla box. They are a bit unusual, and if you’re blinkered to that, you won’t tap into the rich reserve of people who just don’t conform. Have an open mind and you’ll end up with a really great team, which you’ll need in this competitive world.”

For a more in-depth discussion on how EHE Capital can help your technology business achieve rapid growth, email guy@ehe.capital.

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