Brian Wallace, Founder & President, NowSourcing
The 2021 list of most diverse companies in the world shows 25 American companies occupying the top spots. Diversity, equity, and inclusion (DEI) is an important priority for organizational leaders and managers across the globe. Indeed, companies are making significant progress in the implementation of DEI. In addition to increasing employee engagement and enhancing worker wellbeing, 44% of HR and business leaders in Europe, the Middle East, and Asia Pacific prioritize the creation of diverse and inclusive workplaces as well as retention of talented employees.
Why Companies, Organizations, and Businesses Adopt DEI
Diversity and inclusivity at the workplace are nothing new. However, since the George Floyd trial, things have been stirred up. DEI has taken center stage and every company wants to show that they are doing something about diversifying their talents and including people from different backgrounds, ethnicities, and beliefs. Companies even go for diversity and inclusion certification so that their brand can reap the benefits. True, there are several reasons why a company may choose to become more inclusive and diverse. Many articulate that it is the right thing to do, but there are also reasons that justify why a diverse workforce is what the organization needs. A company does not only shift their priorities to cope with changing demographics and adapt to changing realities.
Management also realizes that access to a greater pool of talent is beneficial to the company. Plus, there is strength in diversity as it is established that a team that is made up of different people with different ranges of skills, experiences, and perspectives can lead to increased innovations. According to a study by McKinsey & Company, diversity in a company can lead to greater profits. It demonstrated that companies ranking in the top 25% for racial and ethnic diversity have 35% higher financial returns than the national median. Organizations that also rank high for gender diversity are likely to gain 15% more financial returns than the national average. The numbers demonstrate that adopting the DEI principle is financially and morally rewarding for a company.
2021 Refinitiv List
American-British financial and infrastructure provider, Refinitiv, not only helps organizations across the world make informed decisions on data, analytics, trading, and risk assessment. In the field of DEI, every year, it comes up with a list naming the most diverse and inclusive companies. In 2021, the US leads with 25 out of 100 companies named the most diverse and inclusive. The survey covered 29 countries. Of the 25 American companies. Gap, Inc ranked the highest on the D&I index bagging the highest inclusion score. It received an overall D+I score of 86. Chief people officer of Gap Inc, Sheila Peters, said that it is an honor to be the number 1 ranked company. She further said that inclusion is not optional, and the recognition strengthens the core belief of the company that everyone deserves to belong.
The Royal Bank Canada (RBC) is in second place with a score of 81 while in third place is Accenture Plc of Ireland with a score of 80.25. Homebuilding and construction supplier, Owens Corning of the US snagged the 4th place. Last on the top 5 is Germany’s Allianz, an insurance company with a score of 79.5%.
A Diverse Mix of Businesses
The list also shows a diverse group of American businesses. Union Pacific Corporation dealing with freight & logistics is 20th on the list while well-known brand HP Inc landed the 23rd spot. Renowned Procter & Gamble which specializes in personal and household products and service took the 29th place. Another company which focuses on healthcare equipment and supply also made it to the ranking. Danaher Corporation, dealing with healthcare equipment and supplies, is in the 33rd position.
Estee Lauder is another brand that landed in the top 100 bagging the 35th spot. In 47th and 48th places respectively, are HP Enterprise Co and pharmaceutical giant Johnson & Johnson. Other American companies include Target Corporation, Sempre Energy, Nordstrom Inc, Verizon Communications, PepsiCo Inc, Abbott Laboratories, PVH Corp for Textile & Apparel. Biogen Inc is 77th. Rounding up the diverse list of businesses are Biogen Inc, American Electric Power Company Inc, Merck & Co, and Viacom CBS Inc.
DEI as a business model is expected to continue its momentum in the coming years and leaders will make it their top priority. The goals of diversity and inclusion will be tied to a company’s goals. Companies and their workers will take on a more active role in combating institutional and structural racism while stakeholders will expect companies to be proactive in changing inherent biases in their systems.
No doubt embracing DEI is good for businesses and organizations. The latest list of diverse and inclusive companies worldwide demonstrates that firms are moving towards encouraging and offering equal opportunities and support for underrepresented groups at the workplace.
About the Author: Brian Wallace is the Founder and President of NowSourcing, an industry leading infographic design agency in Louisville, KY and Cincinnati, OH which works with companies ranging from startups to Fortune 500s. Brian runs #LinkedInLocal events, hosts the Next Action Podcast, and has been named a Google Small Business Adviser for 2016-present. Follow Brian Wallace on Linked