Why Inclusion is Essential to Future-Proof Your Business

Harmony in Diversity

Imagine waking up in a world where repetition has replaced rhythm. Where the same song plays throughout your morning shower every single day, only to then find it persistently looping during your evening exercise class. A world where every note strikes the same chord, every jukebox is stocked with the same tune. In this monotony you’d find yourself yearning for melodies that other musical genres have to offer. 

Thankfully, we live in a world where music delights us with its diversity and genre-bending masterpieces. In 2003, the iconic rock band, Queen, and legendary opera singer, Luciano Pavarotti, performed a rendition of ‘Too Much Love Will Kill You’ together. While rock and opera usually live on opposite ends of the musical spectrum, the fusion of these genres was nothing short of breath-taking.

Putting their differences aside and combining their artistry allowed them to showcase their versatility and talent - an approach that could be implemented within the context of workplace diversity. 

Picture working in a professional landscape where everyone looks alike, sounds alike, thinks alike, and approaches challenges alike. In a setting where differences in skills and perspectives are ironed out, leaving an uninspiring sea of sameness. 

Wouldn’t we rather create workplaces that mirror our vibrant tapestry of musical styles? Places that seek a harmonious blend of people from different backgrounds, cultures and experiences and are infused with vibrancy, innovation and progress?

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What is Diversity in the Workplace?

Diversity in the workplace refers to the variety of differences amongst employees in an organisation. These include, but are not limited to, race, ethnicity, gender, age, sexual orientation, disability, religion, cultural background, education and socioeconomic status.

Embracing diversity means recognising and valuing these differences, creating an inclusive work environment where each employee is respected, supported, and provided with equal opportunities. It isn’t merely a note to hit; it’s the symphony of unique talents and backgrounds that creates a workplace ensemble deserving of a standing ovation.  

Within the field of Personal Assistants (PAs), Executive Assistants (EAs), Private PAs, and Office Support Staff, the call for genuine diversity transcends meeting quotas. It is crucial for enhancing collaboration, adaptability, and creativity. 

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“Diversity in the modern world is more than just skin colour – it’s gender, age, disability, sexual orientation, social background, and most important of all, as far as I’m concerned – diversity of thought”.

Idris Elba in a speech to the House of Commons.

What are the Benefits of Diversity in the Workplace?

In a world that thrives on innovation and forward-thinking, the concept of diversity in the workplace isn’t simply a buzzword. It’s essential for the success of any business. However, diversity in hiring is just the beginning; true inclusion is about seamlessly integrating those diverse perspectives into the fabric of the company.
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“Diversity is being invited to the party. Inclusion is being asked to dance.”

Verna Myers – Vice President of Inclusion Strategy at Netflix

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Innovation and Problem-solving

According to a study by John Bersin and Deloitte, inclusive companies are almost twice as likely to be considered innovation leaders in the market. Diverse teams are able to amalgamate a range of perspectives, experiences and problem-solving techniques. This diversity of thought could lead to innovative solutions and unique ideas, which is invaluable in today’s rapidly changing business landscape.  

Strong Talent Pool and Retention

Embracing diversity widens a company’s talent pool. By eliminating biases and focusing on skills and potential, organisations can attract the best and brightest candidates. Additionally, employees are more likely to stay at a company for prolonged periods of time if they feel valued and included in their workplace. For example, if an EA or Private PA feels supported by their principal, they are likely to remain loyal to them for years, building an irreplaceable bond grounded in trust and a deep knowledge of their principal’s needs. It’s not just about meeting quotas! 

A study carried out by Stanford University found that 69% of Millennials and Gen-Zers would be much more likely to work for a company for over 5 years if it had a diverse workforce. 

Boosted Brand Reputation

Customers and clients are increasingly looking for businesses that align with their values, so by demonstrating a commitment to diversity and inclusion, a brand’s reputation can be enhanced. 

In the 2018 Global Recruiting Trends report by LinkedIn, 78% of surveyed companies identified diversity as a crucial factor influencing their employer brand. 

Enhanced Financial Performance

A study conducted by the International Monetary Fund of European firms found that those with a larger share of women in senior positions have a significantly higher financial performance. 

Long Term Business Sustainability

In a rapidly changing global economy, businesses that adapt to diversity are better positioned for long-term sustainability as they can connect with a broader customer base and remain competitive on a global scale. 
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Diversity fosters connections and understanding across varied perspectives, effectively bridging gaps and making the world feel smaller.  

Focusing on Similarities Instead of Differences

Taking a page out of the Pavarotti and Queen playbook, hiring is like assembling your dream ensemble. It’s not about the genre; it’s about finding the rhythm in complementary skillsets!   
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When it comes to hiring, it is important to focus on those key attributes and skills that all strong candidates possess, rather than allowing personal characteristics that might set them apart to take centre stage. 

At Knightsbridge Recruitment, our PAs, EAs, Private PAs, and Receptionists each hold their own personalised collection of experiences. Yet what unites them? A symphony of outstanding communication, organisational finesse, and a penchant for perfection. Some essential qualities to look out for when hiring an Executive Assistant or Personal Assistant include: 

Organisations and Time Management: PAs/EAs must juggle a variety of tasks and schedules. Effectively managing their time is vital for prioritising tasks, meeting deadlines and ensuring that nothing is overlooked. 

Friendliness and Approachability: Receptionists are often the first point of contact for visitors, clients and colleagues. A warm and friendly demeanour creates a welcoming atmosphere in the office and enables others to feel comfortable to ask questions. 

‘Can Do’ Attitude: It is crucial for EAs and PAs to have a ‘can do’ attitude as these professionals must handle a multitude of tasks, no matter how large or small, with ease and commitment. A positive attitude also fosters proactive problem solving as approaching challenges with enthusiasm leads to more effective solutions.

Communication Skills: Strong communication skills are critical for EAs and PAs to convey information clearly and professionally. EAs and PAs often handle confidential information, so excellent communication skills enable them to convey information in an appropriate manner that maintains confidentiality.

Attention to Detail: Precision is paramount when EAs and PAs are managing their boss’s calendar and travel arrangements to ensure the smooth-running of their day-to-day lives.

Diversity benefits everyone!

From employers to employees, diversity in the workplace is a melody of positivity. By orchestrating problem-solving and creating an inclusive and welcoming environment, diversity contributes to individual growth and transforms the workplace into a crescendo of achievement for all! 

At Knightsbridge Recruitment, we are committed to finding the right Chief of Staff, Executive Assistant, Personal Assistant, Private PA and Office Support staff for our clients and equally important, the right job for our candidates.  We offer a tailored, in depth and consultative approach to recruitment and our results speak for themselves.  If you are interested in hiring an EA, PA, Private PA, Team Assistant, or Receptionist, we would love to hear from you.

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