Posted: 10/25/17

Can Conservatives Be Included In The Diversity Conversation?

By Simma Lieberman, The Inclusionist

Someone on LinkedIn recently  directed this question to me. My answer was “I don’t get the question. Some of my best clients have been conservatives through the years. They understand diversity and Inclusion as it relates to innovation, profit and expanded markets. How are you defining conservative. They support everyone having opportunities to do their best work so they look at why some people aren’t, who they need in their organization and how to get the best brains contributing.

It’s erroneous to think of diversity and inclusion as some “liberal” issue. I help organizations create inclusive environments for employees and customers. I’ve had conservative clients, particularly CEOs tell me how they changed their views on LGBT rights, same sex-marriage and gender equality because the didn’t want anyone to be hampered from contributing. I’m not an hr professional. What is conservative to you?

Creating great places to work is not a liberal or conservative issue. Preaching against LGBT rights or a religion is just bigotry. Change jobs”

Unless a company wants to stay the same, doesn’t need to grow their business and only works with one demographic where everyone is exactly the same, companies need to get new ideas, reinvent themselves and stay relevant. Once leaders understand this concept, it’s obvious that they not only need people from different backgrounds, demographics and perspective, they need to develop cultures where everyone thrives and contributes fully to the success of the organization.

I don’t understand the rational for some people taking so-called “anti-diversity” positions or saying it’s part of a “liberal agenda.” It’s part of a successful business agenda which is neither liberal nor conservative.  Maybe we need a broader conversation about what diversity and inclusion is, instead of letting people who have no idea define it,

Simma Lieberman works with organizations and individuals who want to dramatically increase their profit and productivity by creating more inclusive cultures. She is an internationally known consultant, coach, speaker and author. You can reach her at


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