“It’s just not
profitable to have all
retailers chasing after
that has dominated
60 percent for full-time employees and 110 percent for part-timers, report
industry experts. As a result, the focus for managers often shifts to re-hir-ing and re-training, instead of concentrating on increasing profits. And
with the upcoming labor shortage, businesses that can retain employees
will have an advantage.
To reduce turnover, one solution is to recruit and cater to the needs of
employees age 55 and older, which will make up 41 percent of the work
force by 2014. Another strategy is to create a career path for entry-level
workers through mentorship and education programs. Alex Ulanov,
senior manager at Boston Consulting Group, says: “One of our clients
increased its black and Latino employees in diverse neighborhoods by
sharing success stories of people in the organization who had moved
up through the management ranks. They also invested in education for
employees as they moved from hourly to salaried positions.”
Diverse Shoppers, Deeper Pockets
Today, the buying power of diverse groups is growing faster than the
general population. According to a recently issued report by the Selig
Center for Economic Growth, 2007 will mark the first year that Latinos
control more disposable income than any other U.S. group.
“It’s just not productive, or profitable, to have all retailers chasing after
the 18-to-34-year-old white demographic that has dominated marketers’
interest for years,” says Mary Brown, a partner at JWT Mature Market
Group. “There are a lot of people who don’t fit in that traditional demographic and who also have a lot of money to spend.”
By 2011, the combined buying power of Latinos, blacks, Asian Americans and Native Americans will account for $3 trillion of the nation’s
estimated $12.4 trillion in buying power, according to the Selig Center.
Where Diversity Is on Target
Diversity at Target is founded on the principle
that by building a high-performing, diverse
team, Target harnesses the power of a rich
variety of strengths, perspectives and lifestyles.
“We are deeply committed to cultivating an
inclusive environment, where the makeup of
our company and our stores increasingly
reflects that of the communities we serve,”
says Tamika Curry, director of diversity. “We
believe that Target’s success as a company is Tamika Curry
partially due to the skills and perspectives of
our diverse team members.”
From the headquarters to the stores and distribution
centers, the faces of Target’s team members reflect the
faces of the nation: 59 percent are women (compared to
48 percent nationwide) and 40 percent are ethnic minorities (compared to 30 percent nationwide).
Responsibility for creating a diverse and inclusive
organization begins at the top. Senior management,
including the CEO, is required to report annually to the
Board of Directors on its progress in achieving greater
diversity in the work force. Management is also encouraged to participate in a range of diversity activities, including: recruiting, mentoring and leadership development.
Team members create and actively manage Diversity
Business Councils that reinforce Target’s commitment to diversity and inclusion. The
Councils are open to all team members and
provide a forum to communicate and
exchange ideas, build a network of relationships across the company, access volunteer
opportunities and support career development
Diversity also extends beyond the corporate
walls. Target founded the Minority and Women Business Development (MWBD) program to foster meaningful business relationships with minority- and women-owned enterprises and
has developed a mentoring program for minority general
contractors. Target also embraces diversity through many
community partnerships with arts, education, social services and other vital organizations.
Further, Target’s marketing and advertising strives to
create an emotional connection with various market segments by offering them respectful, relevant and differentiated content across multiple platforms. Merchandise
assortments also are tailored across the country to reflect the unique wants and needs of all guests.
“Target is proud of the progress we have made to
integrate diversity into all aspects of our business,”