Yonge Street
August 18, 2010

Edward Keenan

Often, when the importance of diversity in the workplace and of attempting to employ Canada’s large and underutilized pool of skilled immigrants is discussed, it’s addressed as a matter of social justice. This line of thinking says it’s only fair to immigrants to give them a chance to fully participate in the economy, and that Canada’s multicultural mosaic will be richer if we see its diversity mirrored in our business culture.

However, Hadi Mahabadi, vice president of the Xerox Research Centre of Canada (XRCC) in Mississauga points to an additional reason for diversifying the workforce: it drives innovation. “Innovation is impacted by many factors,” he says, “but one of the key factors is diversity of thought.” Usually in creating innovative solutions to problems, he says, brainstorming ideas is a primary part of the process. “When you have a diverse group of people brainstorming you come up with more and better ideas,” Mahabadi says, adding that for companies looking to address a global market, employees with experience from around the world will bring valuable insight into differing regional needs and preferences.

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Reference: Yonge Street