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Growing your business is a challenge. But it’s also a great challenge to have. The trick to being smart about finding the right people to hire is actually rooted in hiring for diverse backgrounds and skillsets. Having a broad range of experiences and worldviews on your team will help you better connect with your customers or clients and achieve real results. Diversity in the workforce has quickly become a priority for many industries over the past few years, but here’s how you can make it part of your growth plan in 2019.

The Diversity Challenge

Energy as an industry has long suffered from a lack of diversity in its employees and in its job candidates. Many companies are invested in hiring a more diverse workforce but struggle to find the qualified candidates from diverse backgrounds. A key contributor to the industry’s lack of diversity is a lack of diversity in the traditional education and talent pipelines. While it’s true that more universities are putting a greater emphasis on STEM education for women and minorities, these demographics are often turned off from a future career in technology early on in their education. This greatly reduces the retention of these candidates within the pipeline and in the workforce later on.

Traditional education programs are making strides to disrupt this trend, with secondary and university computer science programs aimed specifically at a broader demographic, but the issue of diversity remains in the short term. And more companies are looking to alternative talent pipelines to find the right people for their jobs.

The Value of Diversity

If it’s such a challenge, then why go to the trouble of finding a more diverse workforce? Because it will make your company more relevant in the current market, and more successful in the long run. Businesses often suffer from the so-called “chimney effect,” where each business group sticks to their own and rarely do conversations or business strategies across disciplines. This is trouble because it results in a lack of innovation and challenged processes or thinking. Growth comes from change and staying current in the modern energy market means adapting to new ideas, new technologies, and new customer needs. A more diverse workforce will help you be better positioned and more receptive to new ideas and new processes.

Inclusive Leadership and Teams

Just as when different professionals engage with others in similar roles and responsibilities, there is real opportunity to stimulate new thinking and greater possibilities by bringing together diverse teams. To support that, leadership needs to be inclusive and willing to experiment. Remember that inclusivity means opening the conversation to individuals of all generations as well as genders and cultures. Imagine the powerful conversations that can come from a team of millennials and boomers, Generation X and even Generation Z, if they are given the chance to learn together.

When opportunities are open to all within a corporate setting, the potential for team leaders and thought leaders expands in an exciting way. Just think about the people, the professionals, the potential leaders in the world who have stepped aside simply because they were not encouraged to step forward. Learning and development programs are an opportunity for companies to encourage the best and the brightest to lead the way, and they can only support that movement through an inclusive program that allows and even rewards differences in experience and background.

Partner with Williams Industrial

Are you struggling to find the right talent for your open positions? Williams Industrial Services has more than 50 years of experience in the industry to help find the right workers for your company. Contact our team today to get started!

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