Great employees will adopt—and enforce—your culture. Every business has a culture, and no matter what other values comprise your company’s culture, valuing and respecting diversity should be one of them. This doesn’t simply require that you respect different races, ethnicities, and religions. Diversity of thought is important as well. A culture that values and respects diversity will support the notion that there is more than one way to do things. Your employees need to know that they can have diverse opinions, perspectives, experiences, and impressions. None of these are right or wrong, as long as they’re meeting customers’ needs, exceeding their expectations, and achieving the company’s goals in the process.
You may be lucky enough to have employees who “get” diversity of thought and experience, but chances are, you’ll need to set the tone and your expectations. They need to hear—from you—why diversity is a business opportunity and how you can grow the company by serving a broad, diverse group of customers. Once you’ve established that your organization not only values but desires diverse customer groups, you can start training your team on how to handle these different groups’ needs and wants.