The Importance of Diversity in PR
What do you think of when you hear the word diversity? To me, diversity goes beyond skin color; it includes all races, genders, sexual orientation, disabilities, and more. In today’s climate, diversity has become a trend in workplaces. Corporations often preach diversity, but we still see a lack of representation in the workplace. It’s important we understand the importance of diversity, especially in PR, and how it benefits a work environment.
Diversity Promotes New Ideas and Perspectives- Walking into my PR classes and seeing that I’m often the only male or only person of color is quite nerve-racking. I question if I will be the go-to person if the topic of diversity comes up, or if my thoughts or opinions would be taken into consideration when having group conversations. It’s important to view your differences as a positive. Ask yourself how your stories or your experiences can influence a conversation or idea. Diversity encourages the search for fresh information and perspectives, leading to better decision-making and problem-solving.
Diversity helps educate and inform others- We all come from different walks of life. Different cultures, traditions, and morals. The best way to get to know someone different from you is to hear their story. People who learn about different cultures during their education feel more comfortable and safer with these differences later in life. Not to mention, interacting with different groups of people helps build confidence when interacting with other different groups of people in the future.
Diversity helps eliminate unconscious bias- Bias is still a huge issue in the workforce. Many biases are unconscious; racism, sexism, homophobia, ableism and more are so deeply ingrained in our brains that they become a habit. Socializing with people of diverse backgrounds can help uncover some biases a person might have so they can work on implementing change. The first step in getting rid of biases or stereotypes is being made aware that they exist.
In most workplaces, diversity remains more of an idea than a reality, although there are clear benefits in what diversity brings. We need to go back to the drawing board of diversity, what barriers stand in our way from achieving it, and what we can do to overcome them. Hopefully, after reading this, you have an idea of the importance of diversity in the workplace.
This blog post was written by Sean'dre Reid, Secretary.