by Vincent Alonzo | March 20, 2017
On Wednesday, March 22, Successful Meetings will host a webcast, "Including the Rainbow: Planning the LGBT-Friendly Meeting," from 2 pm to 3 pm. To register, click here

The webcast will feature presentations from Jill Anonson, event solutions manager with the ITA group, and Jim Clapes, events manager for Drug Policy Alliance and board member of LGBT Meetings Professionals Association. The presenters will explore the concept of inclusion and what it means in today's world as well as provide tips and best practices for planning events that are inclusive of everyone regardless of sexual orientation or gender identity. 

Study after study has shown that the more diverse a workplace is, the more success that company experiences. A Harvard Business School survey of 250 businesses found that those companies with greater diversity made between 18 to 69 percent more when it came to net income and operating revenue than those with a more homogenous team. Of those same companies, 91 percent with a diverse workforce reported greater customer satisfaction. Businesses with a gender-diverse board, meanwhile, saw a 42 percent higher return in sales, 66 percent greater return on invested capital, and a 53 percent higher return on equity.

Companies with the greatest ethnic and racial diversity are 35 percent more likely to see financial returns above their respective national industry medians, according to research conducted by McKinsey & Company. What many of us have felt and known intuitively is becoming harder to ignore: diversity matters.