"Workplace diversity is among the most important predictors of a business, sales revenue,
customer numbers and profitability." American Sociological Review, April 2009
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Let's start with some basic definitions:
Diversity: The quality of including all sections of society: the Chamber promotes an attitude of tolerance and inclusiveness. (Oxford Dictionary)
Inclusiveness: Not excluding any section of society or any party involved in something; deliberately nonsexist, especially avoiding the use of masculine pronouns to refer to both men and women. (Oxford Dictionary)
Achieving diversity and inclusion isn't an overnight process. It takes time, patience, and commitment but globalization and technology, particularly the speed and omnipresence of the internet, has created a sense of unprecedented urgency for us to understand more than ever that we all are different and yet we are all the same.
Since its inception, the MAHCC has been a leader in diversity recruitment and hiring. Although the Chamber was founded as an organization that promoted the Hispanic business community, it understood its broader role in an increasingly diverse society, and insisted that the "H" in the MAHCC acronym represented "Humanity" as well as "Hispanic."
The MAHCC has long appreciated the fact that diversity is good for business. Even as Hispanics are among the fastest growing minority group in the U.S., other minority groups, such as women, veterans, Asians and the LBGT and disabled communities, are growing, too, and are making a difference in the business world.
These rapidly changing demographics are transforming business, buying habits, and the American culture in unprecedented ways. Even more than technology's impact on the business world, minority groups comprise the emerging markets that will determine how business is done and who succeeds in capturing them as consumers, suppliers, and employees.
It is a growing challenge to find, recruit, and keep talent, which is the most important asset corporations have. Nevertheless, businesses will be forced to engage in the proverbial "war for talent" as they strive to capture markets that have diverse expectations with regard to products and services and as they position themselves to remain competitive in those markets.
Despite the challenges, the MAHCC also understands that achieving diversity and inclusion provides opportunities companies can't afford to overlook. Businesses that think outside the box and whose leaders embrace diversity are most likely to reach the consumers, suppliers, and talent that reside within the still largely untapped minority groups.
Both employee and customer loyalty increase when employees feel like they belong and are valued and when customers are served by employees who look like them. Lower turnover, increased productivity and improved customer service and sales are just a few of the positive outcomes that businesses experience when principles of diversity and inclusion are embedded into a company's philosophy and practice.
MAHCC Diversity & Inclusion Statement
"The MAHCC values diversity and views it as a strength in the organization, in the workplace, and in the communities the Chamber serves. To that end, the MAHCC promotes inclusiveness and equal opportunity for all in its leadership, staffing, policies and practices, and encourages all of its member businesses to do likewise."
Adopted by the MAHCC Board of Directors, September 2007.
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