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The ties between diversity and business success for Utah companies

Diversity and inclusion are among the topics of conversation when it comes to the modern workforce. It’s become such a vibrant aspect of business culture that the D&I acronym has now become a standard part of strategic planning and human resources policy.

But, what is the tie between D&I and profitability? As an expert on business D&I points out in an article she wrote for Utah Business, some people see this aspect of business as more charity work than financial strategy.

“There’s a misconception that D&I professionals are indefatigable advocates for good,” writes Sara Jones, the CEO of the InclusionPro consultancy. “This perpetuates a narrative that D&I work is an exercise someone does for free, out of the goodness of one’s heart.”

In fact, having D&I as a prominent part of business decisions does bring about rewards that go beyond the feeling that you’ve done the right thing. It’s something that businesses should consider as part of their overall business plan. Another big part of the business strategy should be your approach to business banking in Utah. First Utah Bank offers free checking as part of one package that suits the current business climate.

Bringing about positive change as part of D&I

In an interview with KUTV in Salt Lake City, Jones talks about the link between D&I and creating true business value, with leadership at the helm. Remaining authentic in crafting D&I goals and policies is important. It calls for employees going on personal journeys to discover what diversity means to them.

Among the positive attributes Jones cites in the KUTV story are greater team value, creative problem-solving and more engagement overall, which help to further progress.

But beyond this scope is the true strategic approach to integrating diversity and inclusion. Jones writes that change and evolution are essential to business growth. And working in D&I requires an ideal combination of strategy and emotion, when approached in the right manner.

“Shifting mindsets is one of the most difficult tasks because it is based on emotional work,” Jones writes. “To create meaningful change, leaders have to undergo their own personal transformation. True transformation is messy, difficult work, and the payoff is not immediate.”

Transforming self as well as business

Having said that, Jones offers a few tips for leaders to transform themselves, leading to a better platform for strategic thought with D&I. Her list includes these tasks:

  • Reflect on your own views on inclusion
  • Realize how personal leadership style may expand or limit inclusion
Encourage access to profound ideas from team members
  • Expand personal trust networks beyond the norm
  • Lead by example and develop different leadership styles
  • Increase team performance and business outcomes

Going beyond making D&I just an adjunct part of the business — actually integrated into the strategy — helps bring focus to these efforts. Furthermore, it can lead to the highest quality and most innovative work in general, Jones writes.

“Notice how the efforts of a few tireless advocates in the organization are spread across the whole organization―energizing everyone to contribute to an inclusive and innovative culture,” she continues.

Jones makes it clear that diversity and inclusion is an investment that a company should make, and that a company board and senior leadership be involved every step of the way. Establishing buy-in throughout the company, in fact, can be vital to making this change meaningful.

“Top leaders are critical to any strategy  that impacts revenue, marketing, product, and customer/employee experience,” she writes. “And while D&I professionals shouldn’t be expected to take on the role of social justice warrior, an effective D&I strategy aligns social justice to a company’s core business competencies and conviction.”

Business banking in Utah benefits from free checking

As you continue to pursue that next stage of growth in your business, it’s good to have solutions that you know and trust to bolster your financial positioning and cash flow. If your business averages fewer than 100 ACH checks and debits per month, First Utah Bank can provide you with free business checking as a method to maximize your time when managing these essentials.

There’s no minimum balance required for the free business checking program at First Utah Bank and it includes unlimited debit card transactions and deposits as well as free mobile and internet banking. The program is also insured to the legal maximum by the FDIC.

First Utah Bank also has you covered if you need an option different from this one. These options include a commercial checking account for higher transaction volumes that also gives you an earnings credit allowance based on your balances.

As your hometown bank, First Utah Bank has the knowledge and tools to keep your Utah business banking strong for any financial climate. Learn more at our business checking website, or call First Utah Bank at 801-308-2265.