The Strength of a Diverse Team

One third of our region’s K-12 students are children of color.  Making sure these children grow up to participate in and benefit from the regional economy is at the heart of the Greater Buffalo Racial Equity Roundtable. Made up of 37 business, community, philanthropic, religious and political leaders, the Roundtable is developing strategies to advance racial equity in our community.  The Roundtable’s work is led by a vision of Greater Buffalo’s shared future, where racial equity will create prosperity and opportunity for everyone in the community.

Through our role on the Roundtable, the Buffalo Niagara Partnership established a Diversity & Inclusion Council to empower employers by bringing awareness to the competitive advantage of having a diverse and inclusive workforce. At its most recent meeting, Council members learned about the various facets of the Greater Buffalo Racial Equity Roundtable and where the important work of the Council fits into the overall puzzle.

Impact of diversity on team performance
Impact of diversity on team performance

 

A key part of the Council agenda is sharing best practices with employers and providing insight on how to implement those strategies. The Council’s Executive in Residence, Marc Burt, of Inspired Global Resources, shared his experience as the VP & Division Manager of Diversity and Inclusion at Honda.  He highlighted the direct impact a diverse and inclusive workplace has on business growth and productivity.

During this month’s Council meeting, Marc walked the group through an exercise comparing two teams: a homogenous team and a diverse team and their competing speeds of innovation and production. The homogenous team can be on the same page and start very fast, so its business growth is fast.  Despite its fast start, however, the homogenous team will stagnate over time, lacking innovation.  On the contrary, a more diverse group takes longer to come together but once they start working together, the growth can become exponential as a team of more diverse representation is more likely to innovate in the long run.  The Partnership’s Diversity and Inclusion Council is charged with helping businesses more efficiently and effectively diversify their teams to meet the speed of business and experience the long-term growth and benefits of a more diverse workplace.

To learn more best practices from the experts in the field including key note speaker Marc Burt, join the Buffalo Niagara Partnership for Maximizing the Value of Diversity & Inclusion on May 8th at 8:00am. This program will help employers gain a deeper understanding of the significant impact diversity and inclusion can have on a company, including its bottom line.

To learn more about the event, click here.

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