Diversity will be one of the hottest and most important issues of the immediate future and the new world emerging. After centuries of cultures seeking to create mono societies, leadership, housing and even crop production, we are now taking a look at the sample set by nature in biodiversity --- the more diverse structures are, the stronger they are. http://www.globalissues.org/article/170/why-is-biodiversity-important-who-cares
But the conversation of human diversity is now becoming more nuanced. There was a time where companies, organizations and communities felt that you could solve diversity issues by plugging in people who looked differently than you did, but thought the same way. In other words, you still had the same mono culture, but in different shades. The problem with this version of diversity is that it doesn't lead to the greatest level of innovation and possibilities an organization or society can enjoy. This form of "mono-diversity" usually leads to the same kind of results you'd have if you didn't diversify at all. Mono-diversity or faux diversity is like leaving money on the table: why would any organization settle for less when there is more available? True and effective human diversity takes into account other people's lifestyles, experiences, thought processes and visions. This kind of true diversity of thought in leadership very well could have avoided the extinction level event we face today called climate change.
There are those who will seek to mount a campaign that will negate incorporating people from different ethnic cultures into their organization by saying "we don't need the 'cultural other'. We have diversity of thought within our ranks". This, again, is faux diversity and often is used as a cover for subtle racism. True diversity recognizes that, using a foundational framework, organizations become stronger, more adept at figuring out global terrains and, quite frankly, less boring and more dynamic. Here are some of the other gifts that true diversity, leveraging diversity of thought, bring to the table:
More unconsidered solutions. In mono cultures, all solutions come from the same source, which may be exactly what caused the problem in the first place.
Valuing the feminine. There is little value in a woman thinking like a man. But there is great value in a man recognizing a woman's ancient and matriarchal problem solving skills.
Reduces racism. It's hard to make an enemy of someone you depend on for your success and your future.
Incorporates wisdom. Valuing the sacred wisdom of the elders by eliminating ageism can help an organization not make the same mistakes over and over again.
Imports the solutions of the Global South. All shoulders at the wheel.
There must be a rethinking of what true diversity looks like by copying nature and incorporating the many different ways life expresses itself. This trend is happening and may save the day from the immediate challenges the world of the past few centuries has visited upon us to today.
Chet W. Sisk is an author and one of the world's leading Social Futurists. He is also expert on the current world paradigm shift. Find out more about him and the LEAD Global Team at www.leadtheshift.com or you can write him directly at firstname.lastname@example.org