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Written by Todd Sanders, president and CEO, Greater Phoenix Chamber, and Jeannine Watanabe, director of network operations for Cox West Region

In today’s rapidly evolving global landscape, the imperative for businesses to embrace Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion (DEI) is a strategic imperative for sustainable growth and long-term success.

As society becomes increasingly diverse and interconnected, businesses need to intentionally engage in DEI or risk falling behind competitively. A diverse company looks to employ people of different ethnicities, sexual orientations, cultures, and backgrounds. Fostering diversity within the workforce enriches the talent pool and drives innovation. Everyone within an organization can be an ally and help bridge the gap between underrepresented and minority communities to focus everyone on a common goal. A diverse team brings together individuals with unique perspectives, experiences, and ideas, which fuels creativity and problem-solving.

Inclusion is equally vital, as it creates a sense of belonging and fosters a supportive work environment where all individuals feel valued, respected, and empowered to contribute their best work. When employees all feel included and appreciated for who they are, they are more likely to be engaged, motivated, and committed to the organization’s goals. It’s important to make sure that any inclusion effort emphasizes the fact that all are welcome to the table to ensure that inclusion does not inadvertently turn into an exclusion exercise.  Inclusion ensures the unique perspectives, needs, and priorities of your employees, customers, suppliers, and communities are reflected in your daily business, giving everyone within your organization an equal voice and opportunity to contribute by building a workplace where all input is valued. This, in turn, leads to higher levels of employee retention, reduced turnover costs, and increased overall productivity as employees bring their individual strengths and potential for the overall betterment of your business.

It’s important for businesses to recognize that DEI isn’t just a box to tick—it’s the key to unlocking a brighter, more inclusive future for all. Now is not the time to scale back efforts but rather to double down on them. Whether you are just starting your company’s DEI initiatives or are looking to take them to the next level, we invite you to use the Greater Phoenix Chamber’s free DEI program guide and toolkit. Organizations that continue to build their DEI initiatives can unlock the full potential of their workforce, drive innovation, enhance performance, create a sense of belonging, improve the employee experience, and build a stronger, more resilient business for the future.

 

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