It is commonly understood that diversity in a company creates benefits from different viewpoints and reference points which often leads to a boost in the bottom line. However, did you ever stop to think of the ways that developing personal diversity can benefit you? The same way a business can benefit from a diverse workforce, there are many ways you can personally benefit from being open to creating personal diversity.
As a Human Resources Professional, I have seen the benefits of developing personal diversity. If you are wondering how to accomplish acquiring personal diversity, here are some of the ways you can boost personal diversity in your work life:
Expand interests – When you have varied interests you are more likely to contribute a diverse perspective on many issues that may arise in the workplace. Learn and process new information to avoid the stagnation that can go along with failing to develop new interests. Listen to podcasts, read books, attend seminars, take a class or two. Even something as simple as putting yourself in a different setting can spark new thinking. This can make you a company star. Remain curious; stay fresh and up-to-date.
Diversify skill sets – Use your skill sets in new ways. For example, perhaps you are a teacher. Your skill set allows you not only to teach but to also be a mentor, start a summer learning camp, or teach English as a second language. Each of these other avenues will help you develop a different aspect of your primary skill. Again, you are enriching yourself and bringing richness and added value to your employment.
Establish diverse relationships – Network with others. We tend to run in cliques or hang around coworkers that are familiar and in our immediate circle. Break out of that limiting habit and look for ways to connect with individuals in other departments, from other backgrounds, and who work in different aspects of the company. Volunteer to join a project team that is different from what you are familiar with, if your company allows that. Or volunteer for outside activities sponsored by your company. For example, if your company works with Habitat for Humanity, volunteer to help build a home. You will meet new people and, as an added bonus, you will obtain new information about your organization, which will again, help you diversify your skill sets.
Ultimately, just as it is good for companies to embrace diversity among its employees, you should take a look at the many ways developing personal diversity can benefit you. Hopefully, you will gain a new way of looking at your job. Diversifying your skills, diversifying your network of coworkers and diversifying your interests could make you more valuable to the company, plus have the added benefit of making you a more well rounded individual. You can take that anywhere.