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I am certain you’ve heard it before — seek input, be inclusive, welcome perspectives, collaborate with others. But why? Why is this type of inclusion beneficial for individuals, teams, and organizations?

When individuals from different walks of life come together and share unique viewpoints, there is an increase in positive results.

Without diversity of thought, innovation is thwarted, and corporate initiatives may stall.

You need to approach issues with a number of perspectives to be able to see the big picture.

Leaders must leverage the strengths that vary from person to person as well as their unique contexts, preferences, and life experiences.

Many organizations that lack diversity face a common problem: There’s not enough dissent.

When homogenous teams engage in groupthink, they fail to consider outside perspectives, and therefore create blind spots that later get them in trouble.

By inviting people with different cultural experiences and perspectives to the table, organizations can eliminate those blind spots. How? By enhancing understanding of how messaging, products, and services are received by people with different points of view.

And that’s just one way diversity builds strength. Diversity also fosters innovation and creative problem solving by pushing everyone to look at things from different perspectives.

It leverages the different life experiences of team members to create products, services, and solutions that are much more unique than its competitors. This process also helps generate ideas that are more flexible and adaptable to the ever-changing market and customer demands.

And what about attracting that illusive top talent?

Organizations that rank higher in diversity are 25% more likely to attract and retain great talent.

Diversity broadens talent pools, and has been shown to make all employees more engaged and productive.

Inviting diverse perspectives means that on an individual level, we feel appreciated and heard.

Here are some don’ts to keep in mind!

Practice inclusion without delusion!!

Don’t just implement inclusion initiatives for the sake of best practices. Do so out of genuine curiosity and interest.

If you don’t believe someone’s input is worth hearing, believe me, they’ll feel that at their core!

And lastly for the contributors … bring your whole self to the conversation! Your unique experience of the world is both valid and valued!

Every perspective matters!

We’re all moving in a direction toward a common goal in our organizations.

When everyone contributes their perspective to the goal, we can get there more efficiently, more creatively, and more successfully.

Diversity equals strength!