Diversity in terms of gender, cultural background and age has proven to be a key factor for an organization to drive its performance and effectively advance the delivery to their respective markets. Insights and Data Netherlands has set an example of embracing diversity by addressing skill gaps and enticing a wider pool of talents, which only means a more qualified workplace.
Although different views might swing in the spectrum, several studies have found a diversity to be effectively enhancing performance and collaborative efforts in the workplace. Researches carried out by Gartner derived that diverse and inclusive workforces outperformed nondiverse workforces in collaboration and commitment by 50 percent. Moreover, a recent publication cited that diversity drives financial targets as well, based on Gartner Top Strategic Predictions for 2019 and Beyond. “High-performance teams that advocate diversity and inclusive behaviors will help scale digital initiatives, and through 2022, 75% of organizations with frontline decision-making teams that reflect a diverse and inclusive culture will exceed their financial targets.” Goasduff, L. (2018), Diversity and Inclusion Build High-Performance Teams, Gartner, Inc.
In I&D Netherlands, contribution and accomplishments of diverse professionals have been appropriately recognized and credited. As an example, both the cluster manager and chief operating officer of I&D are female professionals. In addition, every quarter I&D recognizes the outstanding qualities and contributions of employees towards the cluster by electing three employees from the cluster as the top employees of the quarter. In Q4-2018, I was elected as an employee of the quarter, and the runner-ups for the second and third place happened to be female professionals with diverse backgrounds.
Being a relatively young female data warehouse architecture and ETL specialist and the lead of the Informatica community of I&D Netherlands, with a unique outer appearance and a cultural background which is different from the majority of my colleagues, I can confirm that the acceptance, if not the preference, for a diverse workplace prevails among colleagues. While working directly with solution architects of the opposite gender, a different cultural background and significantly more years of experience, I have encountered that diversity should never hinder the quality of work or collaboration, since performance, professionalism, and determination surpass any obstacle or collision. Moreover, opposite to the superficial diversity attributes, while interacting colleagues appear to share common intrinsic motivations, professional expertise and personal interests, which enables them to connect and complement each other.
I believe that normalizing diversity and emphasizing performance and skills will make an organization enjoy a more diverse range of products and services, which can be offered to clients. Being different and authentic should never be a barrier and can actually be one of a professional’s strongest assets, disrupting any underlying bias, since his or her craft will speak for itself. An organization with a diverse workforce will inevitably provide skills that are just as diverse. Hence, diversity in the workplace introduces diversity in skills, style, knowledge, and perspective, which yields diverse innovative ideas and solutions, thus better overall outcomes. Should you wish to reach out to me please drop me a mail at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Authored by: Diena Mahran