Diversity and inclusiveness can boost financial performance, and then some: Ernst & Young

Ernst & Young selected as one of Canada's Best Diversity Employers for 2012

TORONTO, Feb. 21, 2012 /CNW/ - Companies with sustainable inclusiveness initiatives have a competitive advantage in a globalized economy, says Ernst & Young, one of Canada's Best Diversity Employers for 2012.

"Diversity of thought and experience can help lead to improved problem-solving, ability to take advantage of global opportunities, and avoidance of groupthink", says Fiona Macfarlane, Chief Inclusiveness Officer, Ernst & Young. "By 'stirring up the pot' in positive ways, diversity can encourage intellectual debate and conflict, which helps lead to innovation, potentially putting a company ahead of its competition."

For the fifth consecutive year, Ernst & Young has been named one of Canada's Best Diversity Employers, a reflection of the firm's continued efforts to build and grow unique programs that promote diversity and inclusiveness internally, in the marketplace and in the community.

Macfarlane finds more and more business leaders making inclusiveness a priority. Referring to a recent Ernst & Young report Winning in a polycentric world, she notes that 53% of business leaders agree that diversity of teams and experience improves both reputation and financial performance.

However, there is still more work to be done. Macfarlane stresses that to really engrain inclusiveness in your corporate culture, you've got to set the tone from the top and implement strategies that teach by example.

"We continue to challenge our leaders to cultivate and marshal innovative ideas from individuals with a variety of backgrounds," says Macfarlane. "It's an honour to be included on this list of Best Diversity Employers because, as a global organization, we build inclusiveness into everything we do. This shows that our actions really are working. These programs are key to attracting and retaining the best talent, and delivering high-quality client service."

About Ernst & Young
Ernst & Young is a global leader in assurance, tax, transaction and advisory services. Worldwide, our 152,000 people are united by our shared values and an unwavering commitment to quality. We make a difference by helping our people, our clients and our wider communities achieve their potential.

Ernst & Young refers to the global organization of member firms of Ernst & Young Global Limited, each of which is a separate legal entity. Ernst & Young Global Limited, a UK company limited by guarantee, does not provide services to clients.

SOURCE Ernst

For further information:

To reach a spokesperson, please contact:

Jennifer Nascimben
416 943 2487
jennifer.nascimben@ca.ey.com

Julie Fournier
514 874 4308
 julie.fournier@ca.ey.com 

Sarah Shields
604 648 3607 
sarah.j.shields@ca.ey.com

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