How Cognitive Diversity Can Make Your Team Brighter


The past few years have been challenging for every business. However, those with a cognitively diverse workforce are weathering these storms and thriving. If you’re thinking about the potential obstacles ahead, make sure you’re facing them with a diverse workforce. Here’s what you need to know.

What is Cognitive Diversity?

Cognitive diversity means diversity in terms of how people process information. It’s not based on gender, age, or ethnicity, it’s instead based on perspective and the way people think, engage with others, and process situations.

When everyone on your team thinks the same way, for instance, it’s harder to solve problems. However, when you have cognitive diversity within your staff, you’re more likely to innovate and solve problems, faster. According to Harvard Business Review: “Cognitive preferences are established when we are young. They are independent of our education, our culture, and other social conditioning.”

It’s why a group of employees might not be able to solve a problem quickly. However, a group of siblings – each with the same upbringing, yet a different approach to the way they think – might actually come up with a better solution, faster.

How Can You Hire for Cognitive Diversity?

It’s not easy since it’s hard to look for. Even if you hire employees who come from a broad range of demographics in terms of age, gender, and ethnicity, this does not guarantee cognitive diversity. There’s also a hiring bias. You might find yourself gravitating towards those who think the same way as you, hiring a homogeneous, like-minded workforce in the process.

To overcome this obstacle, you first need to be aware of it. Also, look for those candidates who question the status quo, face challenges and situations in a different way than you would, and voice opinions that may stand apart from your own. Don’t be afraid of candidates who think differently from you.

For your employees, encourage them to be authentic and share their true thoughts and ideas. When you embrace different modes of thinking, people will be more likely to reveal them to you. It might take time to create this sort of safe haven that welcomes cognitive diversity. However, you’ll build a stronger, smarter workforce when you do.

PrideStaff Can Help You Hire Smarter.

With the recruiters at our Phoenix staffing agency, we can help you source, screen, and hire employees who add value, think creatively, and make a difference to your bottom line. Contact us today now to learn more.