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Diversity and inclusion – LGBT inclusion means business

Michelle Fullerton (Based at Bank of America Merrill Lynch, London, UK)

Strategic HR Review

ISSN: 1475-4398

Article publication date: 12 April 2013

Abstract

Purpose

Bank of America Merrill Lynch recognizes that its most valuable asset is its people – who deliver every day for its customers, clients and shareholders. The company values the differences of its people, understanding that diversity and inclusion are good for business and make the company stronger. Diversity means business. The purpose of this paper is to discuss these points.

Design/methodology/approach

Lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender (LGBT) equality is just one part of the diversity and inclusion strategy. Bank of America Merrill Lynch illustrates its commitment to making its organization one where LGBT employees feel fully valued and included in several ways: through employee‐led LGBT networks around the world; high profile sponsorships; and by promoting an inclusive culture at all levels through the company. This culture is led from the very top, but to be effective, it needs to run throughout all levels of the business.

Findings

A culture where employees can bring their whole selves to work, without the distraction of trying to be something they are not leads to an environment where individuals can be at their most productive and creates cohesive and effective teams.

Originality/value

Bank of America Merrill Lynch's business principles are founded on a culture of respect, equality and inclusion. By encouraging employees to be themselves at work, they are being allowed to reach their true potential and be more productive, and teams can be more innovative and confident to put forward ideas. Diversity and inclusion have a real positive impact on the profitability of a business.

Keywords

Citation

Fullerton, M. (2013), "Diversity and inclusion – LGBT inclusion means business", Strategic HR Review, Vol. 12 No. 3, pp. 121-125. https://doi.org/10.1108/14754391311324462

Publisher

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Emerald Group Publishing Limited

Copyright © 2013, Emerald Group Publishing Limited