The Creative Power of Diverse Ideas: #TChat Recap

share on:
736962_15689336 (2)

Diversity: The art of thinking independently together. – Malcolm Forbes

The notion of diversity has evolved tremendously through the years. Historically, workplace diversity translated into hiring goals focused on racial and sexual equality. But today’s organizations are recognizing that there’s sustainable strategic value in diversity that reaches beyond demographics.

Diversity of ideas, perspectives and life experiences enables organizations to innovate and compete more effectively in today’s global marketplace. Bringing together a broad spectrum of skills, expertise and problem solving approaches enhances outcomes in collaborative environments. However, for this kind of diversity to take hold in the workplace, it must be woven into an organization’s culture. And, like any aspect of corporate culture, it must start with leaders who embrace inclusive attitudes and behaviors.

Dialing Into a Different Kind of Diversity

How can organizations foster innovation by nurturing the “new” diversity? It’s a question on the minds of our own diverse TalentCulture community. And it’s a central lesson in a new book “Think Like Zuck,” by Ekaterina Walter, which examines successful business principles of corporate leaders like Mark Zuckerburg.

This week, we asked Ekaterina to join us, along with Silicon Valley product development executive, Rob Garcia, who leads diverse organizations in creating breakthrough HR technology products. The conversations were rich and lively – peppered with nuggets of wisdom that anyone can use to collaborate and innovate more effectively.

NOTE: For complete highlights from yesterday’s #TChat Twitter forum, be sure to watch the Storify slideshow at the end of this post.

#TChat Week-in-Review

SUN 1/27
TalentCulture Founder, Meghan M. Biro set the stage in her Forbes.com post: “Think Like Zuck: How Diversity Sparks Innovation”

TChatRadio_logo_020813
Listen to the #TChat Radio interview now…

MON 1/28
#TChat weekly preview post: “Diversity in a New Key”

TUE 1/29
#TChat Radio Show:
Our hosts sat down to examine the “human” side of innovation with Rob Garcia, Director of Product Strategy and Marketing at RiseSmart, the leader in next-generation outplacement solutions.

To frame the conversation, Rob wrote a thoughtful blog post, Intentional Diversity: 3 Ways to Create Organizational Strength and Talent Diversity.

WED 1/30
#TChat Twitter: Rob again joined us – along with Ekaterina Walter – and hundreds of #TChat participants, as we opened the Twitter channel to a dynamic conversation about how to leverage diversity for better business results. Key tweets are featured below…

NOTE: For more highlights from yesterday’s #TChat Twitter forum, be sure to watch the Storify slideshow at the end of this post.

What are your unconventional definitions for workplace diversity?

“Different backgrounds. Different approaches. Different solutions. Shared success.” @talemetry

“Diversity of thought & experience gives ‘average’ a chance to be ‘great.'”@alliPolin

“More than statistical differences. Creative diversity, thought diversity just as important.” @LexieFO

How do leaders nurture and cultivate diversity?

“Be open to the unconventional. Note: Everything was unconventional at one point.” @SJAbbott

“Leaders nurture diversity by recognizing the value of “different,” publicly and decidedly.” @RobGarciaSJ

How does conventional diversity play into this?

“It happens organically, but diverse people must be brought together intentionally.” @martinamcgowan

“Diversity in the workplace is necessary to create a competitive economy in a globalized world.” @WeGoodify

What role does HR technology play?

“Digital villages are the now-next community of collaboration inside and out of organizations.” @ReCenterMoment

“HRTech puts too much focus on finding candidates’ keywords instead of their passion and company fit.” @MarcCibulka

“What current resume screening has in speed, it LACKS in ability to see diversity & potentiality.” @N_BarryJansson

How can leaders encourage this “different” diversity?

“Break away from your dept. Ask someone outside your dept to brainstorm ideas once in a while. You never know.” @LukiKit

“Leaders need to educate their teams and organizations about the value of including many different views.” @TerriKlass

“Celebrate success. Celebrate failure. Challenge inaction. Foster diversity. Gain innovation.” @aldampier

Closing Notes & Highlights Slideshow

SPECIAL THANKS: We’re grateful to Rob Garcia and Ekaterina Walter for bringing your understanding of diversity to TalentCulture events this week! Your ideas have inspired our diverse “world of work” community to reflect and and interact in ways that that we hope will make a difference in their respective organizations.

NOTE TO BLOGGERS: Did this week’s events inspire you to write about diversity or other workplace issues? We’re happy to share your thoughts. Just post a link on Twitter (include #TChat or @TalentCulture), or insert a comment below, and we’ll pass it along.

WHAT’S AHEAD: Next week – as Valentine’s Day approaches, we’ll look at how employer/employee relationships have been redefined – and what it means for the future of work. Don’t miss “The Employment Romance is Over. Now What?” on #TChat Radio, Tuesday, Feb 5, at 7:30pm ET. And then #TChat Twitter Wednesday, Feb. 6, at 7pm ET. Look for more details next Monday via @TalentCulture and #TChat.

Until then – we’ll see you on the stream!

Image Credit: Ortonesque

#TChat INSIGHTS Slide Show: “Innovation Through Diversity”

#TChat INSIGHTS: Diversity in a New Key

Storified by TalentCulture World of Work· Wed, Jan 30 2013 17:40:43

Hey #Tchat’ers… are we sexy or what? http://pic.twitter.com/HGwkWGYo w/@KevinWGrossman talking #diversity #HRRob Garcia
For my #TCHAT community! @MeghanMBiro http://pic.twitter.com/C2hLskAaLeAnna J. Carey
Doing work from couch, dealing with sinusitis, watching the tube, and getting deep into #TChat http://pic.twitter.com/cF2RUwAOAshley Lauren Perez
@MeghanMBiro checking in from another rainy day in Hilo HI http://www.twitpic.com/bt57rn #TChatSylvia Dahlby
Q1: What are your unconventional definitions for diversity in the workplace? How is it more than demographics? #TChatKevin W. Grossman
A1: We need to think of workforce diversity beyond accepting or respecting, but as a competitive advantage. #TchatJohn R. Bell
A1. I want it to mean diff in thought, experience and perspective. I still feel that the focus is on race, ethnicity and gender. #tchatMichael Danubio
A1: Diversity comes from education, not only culture! #TchatBenoit RIBE
A1: Seek “fit” in terms of shared commitments and seek diversity to expand perspective and open possibility #tchatSusan Mazza
A1. Diversity is now a conversation about the collective, not about individuals working together. #tchatSalima Nathoo
A1: What qualifies as unconventional diversity constantly changes at work. What is the next viewpoint that will strengthen our team? #TChate.c. stiles
A1. how about those people who OWN who they are- nerd, businessman, fashionista, etc, instead of trying to fit in #tchatAshley Lauren Perez
A1 Diverse teams make for great innovation teams – its more than men/women – but sector focus as well (psychology, engineering) #TChatLeAnna J. Carey
a1 Letting people express themselves & who they are at work instead of drawing a hard line between ME at home & the office #tchatAlli Polin
A1 diversity is about all the ways we’re similar and different from another #tchatMelissa Lamson
A1 Diversity is what makes people stronger, more educated and ultimately more capable. #tchatWeston Jolly
A1 Coming from different “industries” ~ with different “mindset” ~ like Design Thinking #tchatCASUDI
A1. Diversity can mean encouraging alternative opinions and perspectives. #TChatKit Lukianov
A1 Diversity allows for unique POV’s to cross-pollinate ideas :) #tchatRobert Moore
#tchat A1 Diversity opens the door to shocking ideas! that’s creativityMichael Leiter
A1: “Workplace diversity” unconventional definition? Demographics + dif bkgrounds. Goes below surface, takes work. #tchatAnne Messenger
A1: We all have different experiences that we bring to the mix. Utilize those for maximum benefit! #tchatRob McGahen
A1: You have to be open minded to be diverse. Respect those from other cultures & experiences. #TchatLori~TranslationLady
A1: Diversity is experience, age, gender, ethnicity, motivation coming together for a common goal #tchatRichard S Pearson
A1: experience level, family situation (single, married, kids or not) and a mix of full and part-time workers is nice. #TChatchrys peterson
A1. Diversity is a bringing together of all the different talents and gifts in an organization or community. #tchatTerri Klass
A1. “Thinking outside of the box” diversity- someone who doesn’t just go with the flow and sees things differently #tchatBridget Webb
A1 I work in the for profit sector Diversity makes sense & Money $$$ #TchatDave Ryan, SPHR
A1: Diversity should include consideration of insight, experience, opinion, motivation… #tchatMark Salke
A1: Diversity = more than quotas & surface criteria; entire purpose = rich discussions, varied views leading 2 superior #brands. #tchatEvelyn Eury
A1: Diversity in workplace equals multiple people with multiple ideas with a centered org purpose. #TChatJon M
Q2: In the world of work, how do leaders nurture and cultivate diversity in its many non-demographic forms? #TChatKevin W. Grossman
A2. Manage yourself. Lead others. #tchatMichael Clark
A2 Remember that diversity is not something that you are. It’s something you respect and desire to be part of. #tchatStephen Abbott
A2 Cultural Awareness, Effective Listening, Body and Teleconference Language, Emotional Intelligence #tchatTim Collins
A2 Think “swarming” when you staff a team, with varied functions present. #TChatMarla Gottschalk PhD
A2 – Celebrate the value of constructive challenges to the status quo. #tchatDave Birckhead
A2: Shameless passion for what we do everyday! #TChat #TChatJoseph Tatulli
A2. Encourage mistakes and taking risks and helping them grow with choices. #tchatTerri Klass
A2. Leaders could benefit greatly from reverse-mentoring (especially middle-aged white guys). Ideas will come from new perspectives #tchatBob Lehto
A2 Ask for everyone’s opinion. Encourage everyone to challenge each other. Keep open lines of communication and collaboration. #TChatMarc Cibulka
A2: diversity success is directly related to the leaders level of emotional self awareness #tchatEd Hennessy
#TChat A2 Having people present another person’s viewpoint and have that person echo their own promotes inclusive diversity.Kris Marie
A2: Strategic planning during the recruitment process. #tchatbillallemon
A2. When the vision of goals of a company grow and change in sync with society diversity is automatically nurtured and cultvated. #TchatShay M. Lawson
A2: #Tchat, good leaders learn to see, hear different perspectives. It’s hard work!al dampier, dph
A2 For diverse opinions, leaders should establish psychological safety #tchatChristopher Yeh
A2. Diversity impacts the bottom line. The business case is there – it’s up to the leader to realize its implications. #TChatTalent Generation
A2 A diverse leader is a diverse individual. It is important to find ways to grow, educate and expand past your “norm” everyday. #tchatWeston Jolly
A2: Leaders need to create culture that inspires diverse input from all sides #tchatJen Olney
A2. You’ve got to have guts of steel to look another in the eye and engage-connect-communicate. #tchatMichael Clark
A2. Good leaders create environments where each person has a chance to lead. Enabling diversity & creativity. #TChatLexie Forman Ortiz
A2. Smart companies are the ones who realize they need to nurture this in order to retain their #diverse #talent #tchatKimPope
A2) Active listening – be part of the community and not just being reported to about it – be the model – be social #tchatnancyrubin
A2: Empowerment. Patience. And leading by example. #tchatEkaterina Walter
A2 One way is to poll everyone in an organization therby promoting self expression and the brainstorming of new ideas #TChatEnzo Guardino
A2: Leaders should strive to hire people that are different than themselves and their team. #tchatBright.com
Q3: How does conventional diversity (i.e., diversity of demographics) play into diversity of ideas? #TChatKevin W. Grossman
a3: it’s tough when companies tip-toe on tough issues like #diversity, #culture and the #organization #tchatal dampier, dph
A3: Talent who grows and struggles out of poor neighborhoods may have differing approaches from those who don’t need to. #TChatJanis Stacy
A3. It doesn’t. Stereotypes are being broken everyday like bones in the Extreme Sports Olympics #TchatRob Garcia
A3: Watch #UndercoverBoss-CEO ALWAYS has an “A-ha” idea moment from the worker bees. EVERYONE has potential 2 contribute great ideas. #TChatchrys peterson
A3 it happens organically, but diverse people must be brought together intentionally #tchatMartina McGowan
A3 A conventionally diverse team will have many different experiences, approaches and skill-sets which ultimately let ideas blossom. #TChatMarc Cibulka
A3 Diveristy brings new ideas to the table constantly, challenges status quo, improves brainstorming & provides a broader perspective #tchatSuzanne Chadwick
A3 Diverse people bring colloquialisms and different cultural “norms” to the conversation, and all should be celebrated #tchatMartina McGowan
A3. Demographic diversity brings the opportunity to learn about and experience different cultures beyond the work place. #TChatKit Lukianov
A3. Demographic diversity can remind us that the world has a lot more to offer and can even challenge the status quo #tchatBridget Webb
A3: The braintrust that comes from personal experiences, coupled with demographic #diversity, creates instant impact for a company. #tchatDiversitree.com Jobs
A3 We bring our whole selves to work. Our passion, trauma, humor, insecurity and confidence. Often those are attached to demographics.#TChatMelissa Lamson
A3: Our history, our education, our culture, our expertise, our thinking style makes us who we R. Growth thru environmental learning. #tchatEvelyn Eury
A3: Cultural diversity is the womb of innovation. #tchatDave Birckhead
A3: Let’s reward those who nurture diverse thinkers from all walks and talks #TChatMeghan M. Biro
A3: Without care it can hamper true diversity. With a cosmetic diverse feel it’s easy to stop pushing boundaries. #TchatKris Marie
A3 Decision making starts with option generation, and you get more options when you have more diverse team members #tchatGoldbeck Recruiting
A3: Diverse backgrounds yields diverse experiences which yields diverse ideas. #tchatRob McGahen
A3: Ldrs should look within their organization to see what type of LI footprint their “A” players have for guidance #TchatDan Schultz
A3: Most definitely have been asked to endorse/recommend someone and did not. If I wrote it, it is not for just showing up #TChatTom Bolt
A3: Online endorsements are almost the price of admission. If you want “front row seats” you’ll need a lot more than that though. #tchatmatthew papuchis
A3 with caution and a healthy cynicism #tchatAidan Daly
A3: UR brand-indv/otherwise is never about what u say about urself–it’s what’s being said when u leave the room that counts #TChatAngela Maiers
A3 Rather than seeing a ‘click’ I’d rather hear about the experience, from candidate, that resulted in endorsement #TChatClaire Crossley
Q4: What role does #hrtech play in encouraging or discouraging #innovation & diversity of ideas in the workplace? #TChatKevin W. Grossman
A4 As a jobseeker, getting my application through #hrtech screening is a priority. But I want work ethic and dedication to shine too. #TChatMarc Cibulka
A4 To some degree there is something wrong with us looking for HR Tech to figure out a human problem. Let’s not overdelegate. #TChatJanine Truitt
A4: Tech is helpful in locating individuals who may be hard to find in your locale. #TChatchrys peterson
A4.Sometimes I wonder if HR in HE uses #tech, forwarding resumes who have not worked in the profession in 15 yrs, is that using #tech #TchatGuy Davis
A4. Future resumes will be more pictures-videos than words. #tchatMichael Clark
A4: #HRTech that embraces #Social #Mobile #collaboration encourages #innovation & diversity of ideas #TChatSean Charles
A4 Seeing a lot of HR teams own employee recognition budgets and processes. Strategic recognition (thanks) spurs valued behaviors. #TchatAndrew Grossman
A4 There are some very cool “tools” that can help gather a diverse set of ideas from a diverse set of contributors. #TChatMarla Gottschalk PhD
A4. I see a ton of #social #HRTech that promotes collaboration, cross-company and helps foster individual skills to be useful #tchatBridget Webb
A4 #HRTech does prioritize learning and development, that helps breed Diversity of thought. #TChatMelissa Lamson
A4: What current resume screening has in speed, it LACKS ability to see diversity & potentiality #TChatNancy Barry-Jansson
A4 Social business enterprise platforms coupled with culture change can provide a forum for (far) better idea exchange #TchatTim Collins
A4. Hmm.. Technology CAN open possibilities, but it surely can shut stuff down, too…. so, really depends on how it’s used. #TChatCrystal Miller
A4 I love #hrtech but I can see older generations shying away with new tech and not sharing their great ideas and experiences. #TChatEnzo Guardino
A4 Tech can only amplify what is already going on #NoMagicBullet #TchatDave Ryan, SPHR
A4: Any tech will amplify good or bad issues within any organization. #tchatJen Olney
A4: If the firm doesn’t utilize different voices/ideas, then people will stop speaking up. #tchatRob McGahen
A4: Open collaborative tech platforms can and do facilitate and encourage #innovation and #diversity. #TChatKevin W. Grossman
a4 Tools that are designed for collaboration only work when people engage – not pop in, drop off and run #tchatAlli Polin
A4: #HRTech makes it easier to find diverse talent in this great, big world – and, in return, have more innovation and ideas #tchatBright.com
A4: #hrtech can help but no substitute for human connection: the phone call, the lunch, the f2f meeting, the hand-wrtitten note, etc. #TchatDave Birckhead
A4 #hrtech can help because I think it can put the focus on the ideas and conversation and off the org lines and levels #tchatSusan Mazza
Q5: How do we exercise unconventional notions of diversity in our approach to #leadership? #TChatKevin W. Grossman
A5: Unconventional diversity is treating all contributing people, diffs and all, as valued respected members of the team. #TChatJanis Stacy
a5: Celebrate Success, Celebrate Failure, challenge inaction… foster #diversity, #innovation #tchatal dampier, dph
A5: unconventional diversity is allowing people the freedom to have a life outside of the workplace. #tchatGreg Marcus
A5 Unconventional diversity means you have to be willing to be an unconventional thinker-which means going against the grain at times #TChatJanine Truitt
A5: Define and articulate roles. Provide the right tools. Allow freedom. Watch magic happen. #tchatMark Salke
A5 Don’t silo creatives – get them right into the traditional mix. #TChatMarla Gottschalk PhD
A5. Break away from your dept. Ask someone outside your dept to brainstorm ideas once in a while. You never know what others can add. #TChatKit Lukianov
A5 your employees are your customer base. #tchat keep them engaged.John Kosic
A5: Leaders need to get out of the way and let their teams do what they do best #tchatJen Olney
A5: Interact with people in the workforce in a completely different industry, travel, reflect, ask questions #TChatMegan Rene Burkett
A5 – GET out of the way! and let the team collaborate and do its job – give feedback when needed to keep moving forward #tchatRichard S Pearson
A5: The old rule book needs to go out the window. We are re-writing the new one right now. #tchatDawn Rasmussen
A5. Stop making things seem so concrete- welcome people to bring in fresh new ideas and follow through #tchatAshley Lauren Perez
A5: Best diversity-savvy #leaders I know are listeners, models, encouragers. They’re humble, w/ a sense of humor! #tchatAnne Messenger
#tchat A5 Leaders promote idea diversity by deeply cherishing creative solutionsMichael Leiter
A5. Leaders need to educate their teams and organizations about the value of including many different views. #tchatTerri Klass
A5 Not tolerating those who buck the system and create negative energy. Important for a leader to know enough they can distinguish. #TChatMelissa Lamson
A5 Wipe clean our emotional and prehistoric notions of top down leadership and open our eyes to the talent within each person #TChatEnzo Guardino
a5 Leaders shouldn’t be afraid to build teams of people that don’t have every skill a-z but have ooph & passion for the work #tchatAlli Polin
Community building — encourage employees from different walks to exchange ideas. #Tchat A5Andrew Grossman
A5. Encourage your staff to be curious-to take a step back and see what else is emerging in the world-they can bring back useful info #tchatBridget Webb
A5: Companies must foster, cultivate, and invest in unconventional diversity. It will take time b/c it requires a shift in culture. #TChatDeryle Daniels, Jr.

Megan Burkett

Megan Burkett

Megan Burkett, an entrepreneurial problem solver who is launching her career as a community manager, social learning strategist, or a communication coordinator. Growing up on a farm and studying interpersonal and organizational communication taught her the power of community and building relationships.

Her collaborative approach to learning led her to in five diverse internships and numerous independent studies. Megan was recruited by TalentCulture founder, Meghan M. Biro, to serve as editorial calendar project manager, a co-recruiter for #TChat Radio, and communication coordinator for community ambassadors. Megan’s mentors describe her as “wise beyond her years” and always up for a challenge. She’s a conversationalist who will chat with you about physics, sprint triathlons, peanut butter addiction, or finding the ‘real’ in social media relations. Go ahead – introduce yourself!

  • http://www.humanresourcesexplained.com Brendan

    I enjoyed the article, however I did want to highlight the comment about approaching diversity differently as its one I really support. I actually had this conversation with my wife who was invited to be a committee member at a academic conference which is outside her area of expertise. We talked about this and the contributions that individuals outside that particular area can make. Take Psychology for instance, huge advances have been made through the assistant of statisticians as Pscyhologists moved away from single subject research, and utilized the power of large sample sizes.

  • Pingback: Old Dogs + New Tricks: Will HR Learn? #TChat Preview - TalentCulture - World of Work