Diversity and inclusion is intrinsically good for business. It unleashes wider talent pools, diverse thinking, greater innovation, better decision-making and ultimately better returns for shareholders. Capturing the value from these advantages will become incrementally more important as New Zealand’s marketplace globalises.
New Zealand businesses are not currently taking full advantage of the wider skills and knowledge available from a broader range of people in senior leadership roles. For example, women currently make up only 21 percent of senior management and 13 percent of the boards of listed companies. There are still significant barriers to the advancement of women, thus limiting the potential that gender diversity can bring to New Zealand organisations.
Ethnic diversity is also a rapidly growing area of consideration as New Zealand moves closer to Asia in economic and trade terms and as the Maori economy continues to grow as a major political and economic force. The rapidly growing Asian population and the largest Pacific Island population in the world are additional drivers in this changing make-up of our New Zealand society. Yet these areas of ethnic diversity are yet to be reflected in the composition of our senior leadership.
Companies in the top quartile for diversity, compared with those with the bottom quartile, show EBIT up 14%. Source - McKinsey & Company (2012)
Companies in the top quartile for diversity, compared with those with the bottom quartile, experience a return on equity up 53%. Source - McKinsey & Company (2012)
Bringing a diverse set of voices into the strategy dialogue
Creating opportunities for conversations about opportunities in unserved markets
Developing new perspectives on both capabilities and customer needs
Launching low-risk market experiments. Source: Hamel, 1998.