The Value of Diversity in the Workplace

by | 9 Mar 2023

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In the spirit of Sydney WorldPride, we thought it an appropriate time to address the value of
diversity in workplaces and how embracing all genders, sexual orientations, ages, ethnicities,
religions, and abilities is vital to creating successful businesses that thrive far into the future.

Diversity is not just a modern buzzword; we believe it's the key to unlocking an organisation's
potential. There is no denying there are many hurdles facing the financial services industry at
present, which is why it is now more critical than ever to focus on building a diverse industry that
can tackle complex problems, encourage new talent and better reflect the communities it serves.

A diverse workforce provides a range of perspectives, experiences, and skills essential for any
company looking to succeed in today's competitive marketplace. This can be achieved by considering
applicants and candidates from various backgrounds throughout the hiring process and deploying
DEI policies within the workplace.

However, a Forbes report on diversity in finance stresses that inclusion in finance needs to be "more
than a politically correct nicety", elaborating that it must be interwoven within the ethos of a
business to be truly effective.

Businesses implementing DEI policies and seeking talent from a more diverse pool of candidates are
reaping the rewards. A recent PwC Global survey discovered that 85% of financial services CEOs
polled said promoting inclusion and diversity helps enhance business performance. Similarly,
research from Catalyst found that companies that exhibit gender and ethnic diversity are,
respectively, 15% and 35% more likely to outperform less diverse competitors.

However, the LGBTQIA+ community has historically been underrepresented in the financial services
industry and is often left out of the picture. A research report from CIPD in 2020 found that
LGBTQIA+ employees were more likely to experience workplace conflict and harassment than their
heterosexual, cisgender counterparts. 40% of LGB+ workers and 55% of trans workers have
experienced such conflict, with a shocking 34% of LGBTQIA+ employees feeling psychologically
unsafe in the workplace compared with only 10% of heterosexual workers.

This signals the need for significant improvement in organisations' handling of conflict and
harassment must improve, and employers must develop a greater understanding of the specific
experiences – and needs – of LGBTQIA+ employees.

But it's not all bad news; several LGBTQIA+ leaders in the financial services industry today are
breaking down these barriers and highlighting the value of diversity in the workplace.

CEO of Apply and openly gay man, Tim Cook, remains one of the most influential business leaders in
the world. In a speech he gave in 2013, Cook said, "We strive to create products that people around
the world love, and we believe that the best way to do that is to embrace and celebrate our

Bob Witeck, the founder of Witeck Communications, is also a strong advocate for diversity, having
developed inclusive marketing and communication strategies for companies worldwide. In an
interview with CNBC, Witeck stated, "businesses that understand the power of diversity and
inclusion will be better positioned to succeed in the long term".

Ultimately, greater diversity in the workplace is associated with improved performance, greater employee
retention, and higher employee engagement. But if this is the case, why are so many businesses still
not on board? It can often be challenging to address unconscious bias and change the perceptions
and expectations of the 'ideal employee', but working with a specialist recruiter and adjusting your
hiring model can reap far better outcomes.

At Godfrey Group, we recognise the importance of diversity in the financial services industry. By
promoting diversity and inclusion within both our own business and with our clients, we are not only
helping our clients succeed, but we are also helping to create a more inclusive workforce that values
equal opportunity and celebrates individuality. Contact us today to see how we can assist you in building a more diverse workforce.

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