By: Alejandro Martinez, Market Intelligence Strategist
Research shows that being part of a diverse environment makes us more creative and diligent. Yet we still see groups of people that tend to hire, work with and market to people similar to themselves. While this practice may seem to make life easier and less conflictive, it is shown that this is not more productive or effective. Here are five reasons why diversity makes us better, smarter and more effective:
- You prepare better if you’re presenting to a diverse group – If you present to a group of similar people, you may take for granted that everyone will agree with your point of view. If you anticipate there will be certain opposition to your ideas, you will likely prepare better to counter any possible arguments. Diversity in the audience (professionally and socially) can make you more diligent when working on your presentations.
- Racially diverse groups tend to share information better – A study led by Stanford University compared how two different groups shared information. The group that had similar people was more likely than the diverse group to assume and take for granted that everybody had the same background information. This perception is treacherous because people run the risk of missing critical data. A diverse environment incites you to share information, and to make sure everyone has all the facts.
- Diversity enhances creativity – Involving people with diverse expertise makes perfect sense when designing new products or thinking of different ways to solve a problem (ex: engineers and designers, data scientists and marketing professionals). In the same way, having social diversity pushes people to have a variety of different points of view, which can lead to more ideas and better decisions.
- Different points of view lead to broader thinking – Rather than having one idea presented in different ways, a variety of different points of view can create an exponential effect of new platforms and tactics to analyze and solve a problem.
- Diversity pushes you to abandon the status quo – If everyone thinks like you do, then you’re less likely to question things, push the boundaries and step out to re-think your point of view. Diversity pushes you to think harder and in new ways. In other words, it makes you smarter.
Need more proof? There are countless studies by reputable organizational scientists, psychologists, sociologists, economists and demographers that show how socially diverse groups are more innovative vs. their non-diverse counterparts. For more information click here.