If your business or team is all-White, or mostly White, you may not think that's a problem, especially if you're successful and profitable. If business is good, it's easy to keep doing what you've been doing and not question whether there is a need to change your strategies and tactics. Why would you? You're successful and making money! Why would you change a thing?
But despite your success, you may be missing out on something. And you may not be able to see what you're missing because you and your team are pretty much the same and have only “one lens”—the way that you and your team view the business world is likely very similar. You don't have other perspectives or views that might challenge your thinking, create better solutions, or offer new ideas.
Here is an example of how a lack of different perspectives can cost you. Downhill skiing is a big deal. It's a multi-billion-dollar industry and employs thousands of workers. From the equipment manufacturers and retailers to the resorts and instructors, skiing is big business. Or it was, until the 1990s. In the 1990s, the ski industry started seeing an alarming trend: fewer skiers overall, fewer ski trips booked, fewer ski passes sold, and stagnant equipment and gear sales because skiers themselves were spending less time on the slopes. Why was this happening? Two big demographic issues were responsible:
- The skiers themselves were aging