2020 has brought a number of big challenges to the workplace. The greatest one, of course, is a serious epidemic that has made an impact on the economy and caused real uncertainty in the stock market.
That said, we can’t let today’s news detract from efforts to accelerate the path towards gender equality — especially when diverse and inclusive workplaces may be the key to beating a recession.
A recent study by Great Place to Work, the global experts on workplace culture, discovered that “publicly traded companies with highly inclusive workplaces thrived before, during, and after the Great Recession, and gained a 4x larger stock return than the S&P 500.”
Specifically, companies whose under-represented groups reported good work experiences drove a 14.4% increase in stock price during the 2007-2009 recession — at a time when the S&P 500 suffered a 35.5% decline.
The study also found that those inclusive companies saw gains before, during and after the recession, as their competitors struggled. In fact, from January 3, 2006 to February 1, 2014, this group saw a 35% increase in stock performance, while the S&P 500 rose just 9% during that same time.
This news syncs up with Fortune’s 2019 list of Best Places to Work for Diversity with companies like Stryker, Cisco, Progressive Insurance, Accenture and Synchrony taking the top five spots. The list recognizes companies with over 1,000 employees where minorities and disadvantaged groups (women, people of color, LGBTQ workers, people who have disabilities, etc.) are represented at every level and reported a consistently positive experience.
We know that workplaces that are more diverse outperform the rest and even lead to higher stock prices and better returns for their investors. This new study from Great Place to Work adds major support for the business case for diversity, revealing that inclusive work cultures may actually be the key to beating a recession.
The takeaway? If you double-down on diversity and inclusion efforts, your company can expect great performance before, during and after an economic recession and beat out your competitors.
To increase gender diversity in your workplace, check out the latest report from Fairygodboss, How to Attract Qualified Female Candidates Through Your Employer Brand, for tips to build an employer brand that attracts experienced and diverse female job seekers.
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