Board Diversity Beyond Gender and Racial Diversity

Board Diversity is becoming a more prominent issue due to significant changes in society and global activism. Many companies have responded by increasing the number female and minority directors. However, a few companies are extending beyond gender and racial diversity, making sure that they have cognitive diversity (the diversity of skills experience, perspectives and experiences on issues that can help improve decision-making).

A diverse board is more efficient than one that is homogeneous. Boards that have a variety of experiences and backgrounds can solve complex issues in innovative ways and break free of the rigid thinking that creates groupthink.

Many activists and investors are looking for more diverse boards. Being a part of a board that has different perspectives, experiences and perspectives can help them adapt to major changes in society faster and better such as the rapid expansion of environmental, social and governance (ESG) issues.

Boards with diverse backgrounds are more likely to be cognitively diverse. This means they are able to spot the issues within their organization quickly and efficiently. If members are able to challenge each other, they can better address the problems.

A diverse board isn’t a panacea However, it is a good thing. Boards need to be able work together despite their differences. This requires a chair who knows how to foster productive discussions and teamwork between individuals with a variety of attitudes and worldviews. Otherwise it could result in internal conflict and a lack in productivity.