Hints & Tips Blog

Why a diverse management team delivers more than just ‘box ticking’. Part one.

I suspect there aren’t many in business now who would disagree with the view that everyone, regardless of ‘who they are’ should have the opportunity to progress to the highest level in a business if they have the ability and mindset to deliver.

But setting aside for a moment the view that, ‘it’s just the right thing to do’, we are into a more complicated landscape of why some people, women in particular, don’t end up on the top team as often as men.

There are undoubtedly still some barriers, some historical, some unintentional, some cultural and some which are sometimes presented as being of a more practical nature. However, if your senior management team is looking very ‘homogenous’ here are 5 reasons you might be missing out. And why you might want to explore what you can do to identify and remove the barriers preventing you from accessing the talent which can provide these benefits.

  1. Innovation

It stands to reason that if you have people with different backgrounds, life experiences, education and cultures they will look at things differently. Not only does this create an environment where new ideas are more likely to be suggested and discussed, but ‘Groupthink’ becomes less prevalent. ‘Groupthink’ can occur when people become overly comfortable and consensus driven, and occurs more often when there is conformity in the group, i.e. people have similar approaches and backgrounds. This can stifle innovation and new ideas being floated as people shy away from the implicit criticism of the current ways of doing things by suggesting new approaches.

  1. Decision making

Allied to the point about Groupthink, greater diversity on management teams can also improve the quality of decision making and approach to risk. Some research suggests that more diverse groups of people focus more on facts and evidence, and less on ‘assumed’ and shared logic, which in turn helps prevent flawed assertions and therefore decision making. A broader range of thinking styles, experience and perspectives also allows decisions to be debated more rigorously, assumptions challenged more effectively and consequently a better decision being reached.

Diverse management teams embrace a broader spectrum of ideas. Your management team may also benefit from having a greater perspective of what their role involves as a senior member of the business. Click here for more information as to how our Management academy may help you.