Idea storage

Wednesday, July 06, 2005

Wal-Mart: Diversity is good for business

According to this article from, Wal-Mart is demanding that all of its legal partners boost up the number of female and "minority" attorneys of color. They're probably doing this partly for their image, but also partly because they realize that diversity really does help business -- people of diverse "backgrounds" will tend to have diverse sets of ideas as well. Of course, different geographic and lifestyle backgrounds is also important, but that's harder to assess, and therefore harder to implement. "Race" and gender has the advantage of being easily quantifiable (although with race that's not at all true, but it's still assumed to be true by some slow earners).

This story tends to support the libertarian view of economics: good business is utlimately ethical business. Like I said, this might be partially for the P.R., but don't assume that's Wal-Mart's entire motive here. I think it's a selfish act by business for what's in it's own good: a wider base of positive ideas, leading to greater profit.


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