Friday, October 26, 2018

Why a racially diverse workplace is important...

I remember seeing a picture of my favorite beer company on twitter.  What stood out to me was everyone was white except for one person.

I also remember going to a fast food joint where everyone who worked there was Filipino.

A supply company that I have gone to from time to time has mostly white employees.

In all three cases I couldn't help but wonder if the hiring manager had a bias towards one race of people over another.  It did bother me, not enough to completely stop going to those businesses, but I do go to the competition more often now.   I don't always get my favorite beer, I will try other fast food joints and I do look around more when looking for shop supplies.  The loyalty I had to those businesses was lessened by the lack of diversity in their workforces.

I know the comeback is always best available should get the job.  It is because of that I don't completely stop shopping at places where most people are the same race.  I feel like a single moment in time isn't enough to label a company as having racial biases in terms of who they hire.  I know from personal experience there are times that the best available who apply for the job can be of the same race if the number of employees is small enough.  That said over a long enough period of time or a large enough group of employees,  if no biases exist in the hiring managers and the business is not a family business where employees are part of an extended family then the racial make up of a business should be fairly similar to the geography of where that business is located.

In urban Alberta for example we have such wondrous diversity.  There is no way a business with over I would say 10 employees should ever have one race.  I am not smart enough to know what percentage should be what.  I just strongly feel like if a business is hiring the best available in an Alberta urban setting then that business should have a diverse workforce.  If over 5 years this is not the case then in my opinion there may be hiring biases going on.  I use the word may because it is dangerous to speak in absolutes about this stuff because I don't know anything for certain.

From a marketing standpoint it is a must in my mind to at least consider diversity in the hiring process.  To make sure as an HR department you are giving interviews to people of all races, not just focusing on the race of people you as the hiring manager are most comfortable with.   I totally understand how we are all more comfortable with those we have more in common with and how sometimes people of the same race can fit that definition meaning a hiring manager could hire a single race of people without having it be because the hiring manager is racist.  The reason why this is bad from a marketing and PR standpoint is because everyone else not of the predominant race of people the business hires won't see things that way.   They need to believe that you would give them an opportunity to interview for a job irregardless of what a person's race might be... if everyone is of the same race which doesn't happen to be your race are you going to believe that company would hire you?

What are your thoughts about diversity in the workforce?

Master Iceman

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