Over the past several weeks, we’ve been exploring some pressing topics related to diversity and inclusion:
At this stage, you may be wondering what comes next for your company. It’s one thing to identify a need for better diversity programs and policies, and quite another to put ideas into practice. Where do you start? How do you decide what will make for a truly effective initiative?
In our research, we came across several excellent examples of cultures to emulate. While there are plenty of companies doing diversity right, these ones really stood out for their focus on employee engagement.
1. Alibaba Group
As the world’s biggest e-commerce company, Alibaba Group serves hundreds of millions of users and hosts millions of merchants. Transactions on its online sites totaled $248 billion in 2017, more than those of eBay and Amazon.com combined.
The secret to success? Women.
Taking the goal of gender equality to a deep level, chairman Jack Ma describes women as the “secret sauce” behind Alibaba’s dominance in the online shopping industry. More than one-third of Alibaba Group’s founders were women, and a similar percentage are in senior executive roles.
Ma went so far as to claim that “women’s perseverance and attention to details will outperform men in the age of robotics and machine learning.”
When it comes to creating programs that maximize the revenue potential inherent to gender diversity, Alibaba is an excellent example to follow.
Global consulting and professional services firm Accenture has partnered with more than three-quarters of the Fortune Global 500 and serves clients in over 120 countries and across some 40 industries.
At the core of these achievements is diversity in the workplace.
Accenture has long been known for embracing diversity as a source of innovation, creativity, and competitive advantage. As one of the first tech companies to share its workforce demographics and progress toward internal diversity goals, leadership is holding the company accountable in a very public way.
Is it a risky approach? Perhaps. Does it work? Absolutely. According to Accenture’s latest available data, the company is well on its way to achieving a dynamic workforce that’s highly inclusive of various racial and ethnic backgrounds as well as veterans, military spouses, and persons with disabilities.
Currently, in the top ten of DiversityInc’s 2018 Top 50 Companies for Diversity, Accenture has ambitions to be the most inclusive and diverse company in the world.
If you’re looking for inspiration, Accenture is definitely a company to keep your eyes on.
A Forbes Top Multinational Performer, beauty company L’Oréal has a presence in 130 countries on five continents. To say respect for multicultural diversity is at the core of this company’s success would be a drastic understatement.
L’Oréal sponsors disability awareness workshops in India, pairs employees with multicultural students in the Netherlands, and offers training to young adults in vulnerable Pakistan communities—to name just a few of its many global initiatives.
Worldwide, the company is known for offering a robust portfolio of diversity and inclusion training for employees at all levels around the world. The company also tops the list for gender equality: Women at L’Oréal account for 69 percent of the workforce and 53 percent of key positions.
When it comes to multiculturalism in the workplace, L’Oréal offers a bevy of best practices to learn from.
With 57,000 employees in over 60 countries, the world’s largest PC vendor has built its success on a strong foundation of diversity and inclusion. And not just by the numbers—though the company did score a perfect 100 percent on the Corporate Index for LGBTQ equality—but in everyday practice, too.
Lenovo’s very tagline, “different is better,” encapsulates the essentials of two-dimensional diversity at its finest.
In the words of Yolanda Conyers, the company’s chief diversity officer, serving a global customer base requires “more than out-of-the-box thinking, because it’s not just one box. It’s a hundred different boxes. A million different boxes. It takes every dimension of our diversity. All our diverse mindsets, skills, and cultural backgrounds, to deliver such a wide array of technology.”
With a focus on creating programs that embed diversity and inclusion into the company’s DNA, Lenovo is continually coming up with new ideas that are worth watching.
In conclusion: While the above list is far from comprehensive, it’s a great start for anyone in need of inspiration. These companies are paving the way for an exciting future where employees are able to engage with a diverse array of backgrounds and perspectives.
For more diversity and inclusion resources for business leaders, read this post.