Developing Strategic Approaches With Diversity Management

Differentiating Differences

NMC prided itself on the success of its recruiting efforts. They were hiring women and minorities very successfully. However their experience with retention was alarming. Despite their success in recruiting, they could not increase the representation of women and minorities in the workforce. Additionally, NMC had introduced three major initiatives within the previous 6 years and was reluctant to introduce yet another. They were also uncertain about the degree to which some of the initiatives were working.


We conducted two abbreviated Executive Briefings and a Strategic Thinking Session (STS) during which we examined three major areas of potential diversity tension:

  • Workforce Diversity
  • Workplace Diversity
  • Marketplace Diversity

This macro analysis intended to study the issue of retention, explore the possible synergies among the other initiatives and identify any other opportunities the NMC could leverage to improve their morale, productivity and retention of all valued employees.


Findings from the STS led to the realization that the autonomy of the divisions required different strategies. There needed to be support for the divisions to address the key diversity mixtures that impacted their business. The three key mixtures were:

  • Division 1: Mergers and Acquisitions
  • Division 2: Cross-Cultural Training
  • Division 3: Race and Gender

The mix of divisional needs also uncovered the need for:

  • developing managerial coaching and feedback skills;
  • identifying clear criteria for employee development and promotions;
  • establishing organizational support for employee development;
  • integrating current “people management” initiatives.

At the corporate level, these results provided a compelling business motive to get serious about managing diversity.