News & Insights

Measurement not required? Doesn’t mean you shouldn’t be doing it.

Over the past several years, there has been an increased focus on the importance of diversity and inclusion at all levels – but especially in the C-suite and Boardroom. 

Progress is often hard to measure given differing disclosure requirements of both public and private companies. But like all issues that fall under the ESG spectrum: just because you aren’t measured on it doesn’t mean you shouldn’t be doing it, and effectively holding your own business to account over the way that it evolves to become a ‘better’ company.

There is the practical consideration that every good private company may find itself becoming a public company, so greater rigour and metrics are a good thing to instil. But there are many broader considerations that shape business value and reputation in the eyes of other stakeholders, chiefly employees, potential hires and business partners. 

Then there is the practical consideration.  For example, start-ups and other fast-growing private companies may be more likely to attract capital as investors place an increasing importance on diversity and inclusion in their investment calculus.

Businesses pursuing relevant ESG goals – so pretty much all of them – will always want to quantify how diverse the organisation is, particularly at boardroom level, and they will want to see measured progress towards applicable targets. But there’s also likely value to be gained from simply sharing information that doesn’t centre on statistics – the employee perspectives, practices and challenges of change that can all contribute to engaging storytelling. 

 

Because often the most important audiences for content and data around diversity and inclusion are internal ones, both to reassure employees that the company is pursuing a clear diversity and inclusion roadmap, and to share facts that can help them in becoming stronger external advocates.

What does this all point to then? Firstly, action to increase diversity and inclusion, in all of its forms and particularly at the very top of the business, must continue, be measured and be shared. But doing so should not stop at statistics. Of all ESG factors, diversity and inclusion is of course highly personal and emotive, and simply retelling the figures is not going to convince the people who matter most that your focus and achievements are because you cherish it as a business, as well as see value in increasing ‘performance’.

That starts with telling compelling, resonant stories within your own business, to let your credentials literally speak for themselves rather than being confined to data points.

Interested in learning more?  Please contact Steve Earl.

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