Workplace diversity typically enables teams to use multiple perspectives to solve problems. A collaborative team, with varying backgrounds, experiences and knowledge, is usually able to find new ways of doing things to deliver innovative products and services. If you want to explore ways of promoting diversity at your small business, just ask your employees. Undoubtedly, they have a lot to share. Failure to engage your workforce and exploit diverse opinions may cause you to miss opportunities for growth and expansion.

A diverse staff, including differing genders, ages, cultures, capabilities and experiences, tends to stimulate creativity and innovation. Groups and teams benefit when they have access to different opinions. Successful organizations attract, retain and develop a broad range of employees for leadership roles. For example, a company can track and monitor its workforce demographics over time by measuring representation of women, ethnic groups and other populations. Management can adjust programs if needed to address shortcomings. These companies foster inclusive environments, acknowledging and rewarding contributions of each individual as well.

Recruiting Examples

One way a business can ensure it has a diverse workforce is to recruit in multiple locations and ways, attracting the young, old, veterans and career changers. This serves to broaden the talent pool. Working with organizations such as “Management Leadership for Tomorrow,” you can place underrepresented groups in internships or full-time jobs at your company. Build relationships with community programs, local schools and universities to identify diverse candidates for your business. This also sets up opportunities for on-the-job development and career advancement.

Collaborating Examples

Cooperative teams and groups expect and require that all members treat others with courtesy, dignity and respect. Policies and procedures prohibit discrimination and harassment. Even a small business can set high standards and go above and beyond compliance with diversity laws and minimum requirements. For example, you can encourage employees to speak up and report suspected harassment or discrimination. Using free online resources, a small business leader can help her employees understand their own cultural preferences, identify strategies for handling cultural differences, anticipate challenges and adjust to functional norms in other countries to work more effectively with business partners.


Diversity works to improve operations by balancing the needs and opinions of people of different ages, races and genders. Leaders who embrace diversity encourage people to value those of differing backgrounds and experiences. For example, they run team-building events that provide opportunities for sharing food, traditions and practices. Diversity and inclusion mean that everyone in the company, group or team has an opportunity to contribute.