When people think of Diversity & Inclusion, they often think of racial, ethnic or gender diversity. All of these channels of Diversity & Inclusion continue to be important and deserve the attention that they receive and then some. More organizations also need to recognize the importance of generational Diversity & Inclusion. There are a number of millennial stereotypes that are being bought into that are factoring into the high millennial unemployment rate. There are several things that employers can do to help improve company productivity and reduce millennial unemployment at the same time.

There are many cases where negative millennial stereotypes and perceptions have led older generation leadership to avoid millennial hires. This is a classic case of fearing what you don’t understand. Millennials are ushering in a new way of thinking and doing things that many of their Baby Boomer counterparts don’t understand so they avoid the challenge and effort of millennial integration and inclusion altogether. This can change and I believe that it will change. It will eventually change if for no other reason than out of necessity for the survival of the businesses that lack generational diversity.

Millennials represent one of the largest consumer groups in America. It behooves any organization to leverage the relevance and connectivity that millennial team members can offer to effectively help reach other millennials. It is also important for companies to be able to benefit from the diversity of thought and approach to problem solving that millennials bring.

Diversity & Inclusion doesn’t only matter to millennials because it benefits them; it matters because it’s the right thing to do. Millennials want to be part of corporate cultures that embrace diversity and promote climates of inclusion. When this is not the case they will quickly seek opportunities elsewhere or look to create their own.

Diversity & Inclusion should not be a tactic or a box to check. It should be a natural and organic part of the corporate culture. Embracing the diverse millennial talent that is already available to you and creating welcoming and empowering climates of inclusion benefits everyone. It benefits the employee, the company and the overall economy.

Diversity & Inclusion matters to millennials and it should matter to you too. If doing the right thing isn’t enough, here are a few other benefits of Diversity & Inclusion.

  1. Increases innovation
  2. Improves profitability
  3. Strengthens marketplace relevance
  4. Attracts and retains top talent
  5. Enhances brand image and reputation