We have always believed that diversity is critical for business. More diverse companies are better placed to attract and retain top talent as well as improve their customer orientation, employee satisfaction and decision making, all of which can lead to a virtuous cycle of enhanced value creation. Moreover, diversity in the workplace is inextricably linked to equality. Companies that commit to ensuring everybody has an equal opportunity and no one is treated differently or discriminated against will ultimately contribute to the steady erosion of the pervasive gender, racial, ethnic and economic inequality in our societies. With this in mind, we have strived to understand how our companies manage and promote equality and diversity across all levels of the organisation to support long-term financial performance.
An inclusive society has multiple benefits. As long-term investors who are investing to benefit from long-term structural trends, we must consider the issues caused by inequality, including those stemming from discrimination, in each investment we make.
While we have big aspirations in driving good diversity and inclusion practices, we also remain humble about the significant challenges that remain in various organisations that are shaped by their cultures and operating environments. In the following paragraphs, we will share our experience of engaging with companies in India on gender diversity issues.