Startup Capital: Why diversity should be seen as a competitive advantage – The Post

Startup Capital: Why diversity should be seen as a competitive advantage

Diversity is a key element of effective entrepreneurial enterprise
August 16th, 2015 7:00 am| by Jasenko Hadzic
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Diversity of gender, educational background, and industry is often cited as important to healthy entrepreneurship ecosystems. Is it something that we are known for in Denmark? Not really.

At the last election Dansk Folkeparti came in second, becoming the second largest political party in the country. One of it’s goals is to tighten the borders, making it harder for both startups and large companies to bring international talent to the country.

The power of different
Cultural differences and even language differences are seen by the politicians as putting Denmark at some kind of disadvantage. Let’s dig into some of the advantages of diversity.

Companies are constantly trying to stay ahead of the competition by understanding their clients, their market and their competitors better. Having a broad perspective on things helps with this.

Broader perspective
People from different backgrounds see the world differently. So, by bringing diverse people together in a work environment, a company can get a broader perspective of things. With a broader perspective, a company might be able to go after a larger market not yet considered, and it is able to communicate more effectively to an existing audience.

Women make up roughly 50 percent of our society. Nevertheless, many industries, including the tech startup scene, still tend to recruit more male talent than female talent. The outcome is a wider gender gap that limits the reach of entrepreneurial exposure beyond the startup ecosystem.

Diversity delivers
According to research, women’s choices impact up to 85 percent of all purchasing decisions. Not only that, but several analyses show that women are the largest single economic force, not just in the United States but in the world. Research also shows that diverse teams often outperform teams composed of the very best individuals. Diversity in problem-solving and perspective trumps individual ability.

All in all, if we want the startup ecosystem, and our society in general, to truly prosper, we need to make a conscious effort to start with the building blocks of diversity.

Jasenko Hadzic - Startup Capital


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Jasenko is a pianist, entrepreneur and community-builder. He has lived and worked in five countries and speaks eight languages. He is currently head of #CPHFTW, an organisation run by startups for startups, which aims to make Copenhagen the best startup city in the world. Find out more at cphftw.org.