Divide to conquer: promoting diversity and a collaborative culture in companies

26 September, 08:30 - 10:30

Mattos Filho, São Paulo, Brazil

Teams of professionals with different profiles tend to be more innovative and committed, making them more productive. This strategy has been adopted by companies to offer competitive, high quality services and achieve better results.

One of the keys to promoting diversity is the group of professionals considered as “allies”; people who place themselves in the others’ shoes and who empathize with and defend a cause that is not necessarily their own. They work for the collective, seeking to ensure a workplace that is diverse and collaborative, and so, more human.

Heidi Gardners, the renowned Harvard professor, believes that collaboration is essential for the success of companies in the 21st century. For her, promoting intelligent collaboration among professionals translates into reaching a higher level of performance and a better strategic understanding of the business in question, resulting in better solutions to complex problems through these various viewpoints. Companies which are collaborative, as with those which value and encourage diversity, offer better services, win more clients and attract and retain talents.

As such, diversity and collaboration seem to be two forces able to strengthen each other in extremely beneficial ways, yet they certainly do not happen without effort. It is necessary to actively promote diversity of professional profiles and a collaborative culture among them. Furthermore, companies’ leaders need to commit to the causes and to encourage the role of allies.

When teams become more diverse, the multiplicity of ideas and viewpoints grows and collaboration becomes more complex. Promoting diversity, a collaborative culture and allies is rife with challenges and this event will reflect on the following:
• How to create diverse teams that are able to collaborate effectively when they involve such different points of view?
• Based on diversity and collaboration, how to effectively promote inclusion?
• If allies are a key part of promoting diversity and collaboration, what role should they play in the effective promotion of inclusion?
• To what degree do diversity and collaboration also promote innovation?
• How can engaged leaders contribute to this process of building a culture of diversity and collaboration?