Despite the billions of dollars U.S. companies spend on diversity programs each year, current strategies will not necessarily achieve their goals, according to an Academy of Management Review article.

“Staying the course with regard to how diversity initiatives are currently implemented is unlikely to result in substantial progress toward diversity goals,” Lisa M. Leslie of New York University wrote in “Diversity Initiative Effectiveness: A Typological Theory of Unintended Consequences.”

“For example, a number of Silicon Valley companies recently implemented extensive diversity initiatives that failed to produce the desired impact. The conclusion that diversity initiatives are not always effective is mirrored in academic research,” she wrote.

Programs designed to increase the number of hires, promotions, or pay raises among “disadvantaged groups”—including ethnic and racial minorities, women, immigrants, people with disabilities, and LGBT or poor people—fail to hit the mark or even reduce target numbers among such employees, Leslie found.

Continue reading the original article at Fast Company

Read the original research in Academy of Management Review

Read the Insights summary: Why Diverse Workplaces Remain Elusive


Learn more about the AOM Scholars and explore their work:

Lisa M. Leslie