Thursday, August 6, 2015

What are the Truly Competitive Advantages of Inclusiveness

The business leaders must work with the right mindset to create an inclusive organization with every dip in the business lifecycle.

Contemporary organizations are diversified with a multigenerational, multicultural workforce using multidevice to do multitasking. Competitive advantage can be created by bringing together diverse groups of people whose mindsets, experiences, preferences, skills, and capabilities are additive to one another. We are stronger through diversity, it allows us to explore options that one individual or a homogeneous group might not have uncovered; we are idea-rich and vision clear through inclusiveness. Diversity is the engine for creativity and a facilitator for merging building blocks of new ideas, fresh insights, and ultimate wisdom. But how to embrace the diversity of thoughts and achieve such competitive advantages of inclusiveness?

"Fitness for purpose”: Embracing Diversity has, at least, two positive aspects: Firstly, you are doing the right thing, giving every human being an equal opportunity on their merit and being inclusive, recognizing, that every one of us is different. But secondly, in this globalized world and market, it has amply been demonstrated, that embracing diversity makes total business sense, for many, many reasons. Good management practice is the ability to harness the best potential of all human resources in the organization. It is a waste of resources to leave any valuable human potential left unrecognized, untapped and unused. There are all kinds of differences that exist between individuals. The focus of inclusiveness needs to focus on cognitive differences, skills, abilities and the wealth of ideas since the value lies in the contributions of the individual to the organization. Effective communication is also important, since different perspectives, and talent, lead to well-rounded ideas and solutions. It is about skill and ability to work together. It is more a thing of personality match and expertise in the goal of the company.

Diversity should refer to the cognitive difference, the culture intelligence, and the strengths of the skills people bring to the team. Leaders should always look for the capabilities and skills that they don't have so that they can build a winning team and complement each other. In such a global climate, those businesses that are unwilling to GENUINELY embrace diversity, are unable to know how to tap their diverse resources, and be inclusive and recognize merit and ideas, no matter where they come from, will not be able to survive, leave alone thrive. Diversity can benefit any organization, as a whole. Equal opportunity is not just an end but also means of improving your company’s agility, and maturity.

Inclusiveness will be the mantra of the future. Diversity can create a lot of confusion and conflict if people are not well prepared for it, and if the leaders are unaware of how to manage diversity. There should not be a stagnation in engaging the talent from different demographics. Any organization should focus on learning new things and how to surge forward in creating success stories. We can learn a lot from different mindsets (thought processes), cultures and positions, so organizations as a whole can be competitive enough to keep surging further. Having an inclusive culture always helps us learn from diverse people. Orienting people and making them aware of the diversity in their organization or team, helps them understand the value of harnessing the differences, and then giving them the tools and experience of how to effectively communicate and build trust across these diverse cultures are usually essential and the key to reaping the benefits of diverse organizations.

Inclusiveness needs to be well embedded in the business culture in a truly global organization. There are many multi-national businesses, but very few truly global organizations. Often, diversity is most common at very low levels of the organization, the higher the hierarchy the more homogenous the workforce is. Diversity nowadays is an essential policy for any global organization, which enhances the team with various and different aspects and traits, people with learning agility all like to work in the multinational workplace, because it will provide richness in ideas, opinions, cultures, activities, etc. The policy is still on the surface, though, organizations need to build an innovative and inclusive culture, this only happens when the ‘inclusiveness mindset’ is available to top management. In some cases, organizational culture is so powerful and even then will be able to influence the surrounding societies of the organization.

The business leaders must work with the right mindset to create an inclusive organization with every dip in the business lifecycle, from individual thinking to the collective mind (culture); from strategy to execution; from process management to performance measurement, to make it both principle and practice, and make it a truly competitive advantage of achieving long-term prosperity.


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