At Opsani, we take diversity seriously. We are experienced entrepreneurs, and our experience clearly shows that diversity creates a better company culture, allows for more creativity, and ultimately creates more value for customers.
Happily, much of the world is on the same wavelength. A recent Bloomberg headline read “Goldman to Refuse IPOs If All Directors Are White, Straight Men.”
My analysis is that Goldman’s move is a positive development for everyone. Why? Because we know diversity makes communities thrive, which benefits everyone. We have solid historical evidence in the form of port cities.
Here are a couple of facts:
- Around the world, port cities are vibrant, economic hubs. These cities include major landlocked airports, like Dallas Fort Worth. The reason? Many people from around the globe flow through port cities, making them diverse. And these different travelers bring commerce, innovation, and new ideas with them. This has been the case for centuries. Think Shanghai, Los Angeles, Singapore, Rotterdam, or Saint Petersburg.
- The economy is not a zero-sum game. With the right policies, when the economy grows, everyone benefits (and that includes white, straight men!). Growth can spur new growth and innovation.
Not only does Goldman’s policy reflect growing worldwide attitudes to push for more diversity, it is also an economic play. Why? Because companies with more diverse boards are better investment vehicles. They are the boardroom equivalent of the port city.
Growth benefits everyone. Therefore, a policy that fosters growth benefits everyone at the macro level. Some may argue that there is a discriminatory effect to Goldman’s decision as it would potentially keep certain boards from going public with Goldman as the banker. It should be pointed out that Goldman’s move is an markert-leadership move and will promote the greater good. As such, everyone will be better off.
Bottom line: Diversity leads to growth because it injects new ideas, perspectives, and energy. We know this from what the historical record teaches us about port cities, which are some of the most interesting, vibrant and generative communities on earth. This is why we take diversity seriously at Opsani.