Research continually shows that company diversity is positively correlated with increased profit—even for small and medium-sized companies. But smaller tech businesses don’t often think much about diversity. After all, if you only have a few employees, how diverse can you be?
If you turn that around, you get a different perspective: One person in your company represents a significant change. In large enterprises, one person may not move the needle at all.
Two big questions spring to mind for most businesses. First, why does diversity matter, especially in small business? And, second, where do I start?
Diversity matters, especially in small business, for a variety of reasons. Workplace diversity increases creativity, problem-solving, decision making, profitability, productivity, employee engagement, and employee retention. Plus, it can help your company’s overall reputation in the broader community.
Outside of your specific company, diversity matters to our industry as a whole. As you’ve read many times (and probably seen yourself), people change jobs much more frequently now than at any point in history. And while some of these people decide to change careers, most move to a related job in another company. Climbing the corporate ladder in the modern world often means moving from one company to another.
Because companies spend most of their time hiring from one another’s job pools, all IT-related companies contribute to overall diversity of the industry. An employee’s first job out of school may determine whether they are inside or outside the technology field for life. Diversity—or lack thereof—is heavily impacted by companies that hire people into their first tech-related job.
Karl W. Palachuk is an author, coach, business owner and a member of the Advancing Tech Talent and Diversity Community. Learn more about Karl at Small Business Thoughts.