Glenn Llopis ,
The cultural demographic shift in the United States is about the workplace and marketplace telling us it’s becoming less about the business defining the individual and more about the individual defining the business. This is exactly what Hispanics are awakening corporations to, as they begin to recognize that young professionals entering the workforce are in search of the right career and employer who will allow them to be their most authentic selves. This equally holds true to those Hispanic professionals who have been battling the gulf between assimilation and authenticity for years – and are now ready to advance as 21st century leaders by allowing the influence of their cultural values to empower the natural ways they think, act and are motivated to perform at work.
Every 30 seconds, two non-Hispanics hit retirement age and one Hispanic turns 18 years old. According to the Selig Center for Economic Growth at the Terry School of Business at the University of Georgia, Hispanics will represent 74% of labor force growth by 2020. However, according to the Center for Hispanic Leadership, Hispanic professionals are only delivering 40% of their full potential at work. With the growing purchasing power of Hispanic consumers that is estimated to reach $1.7T by 2019 (according to the Selig Center), there is urgency to employ and advance more Hispanics into influential leadership roles – where they can help most authentically guide brands to create the most effective strategies to not only attract and develop top Hispanic talent, but capture the growing Hispanic marketplace.
Isn’t it safe to assume that if Hispanics could deliver more of their full potential, their purchasing power would also increase? So what are we waiting for? Perhaps the implications would be better understood if we realized that the combined purchasing power of U.S. Hispanics represents the 16th largest economy in the world.
The rapid growth of the U.S. Hispanic population that is at the forefront of thecultural demographic shift is requiring corporations and their leaders, across all industries, to think differently about how they can most effectively engage with Hispanic employees and consumers to drive new areas of growth. As such, there is a growing need for senior executives and all levels of leadership to be more culturally competent in an effort to awaken the full potential of the Hispanic workforce and to engage more strategically with Hispanic consumers by building deeper, more meaningful and trustworthy relationships.
Opportunity Gaps Across All Industries
Healthcare, STEM educators, financial and insurance service providers, automotive, telecommunications, real estate, media & entertainment, retail and consumer brands – all must not only be actively involved in this transformational conversation, but must properly invest to solve for the growing “opportunity gaps” they have unknowingly perpetuated. This is why Hispanics have not historically felt fully engaged in their work — and why consumers have grown tired of being sold by brands who have failed in their approach and intention to relate with and serve their unique needs influenced by their cultural values. This has become clearly evident in the manner in which most corporations have not committed to invest in long-term growth strategies to solve for the widening opportunity gaps, instead focused more on short-term compliance tactics to protect their reputations. As such, Hispanics have grown frustrated, oftentimes feeling undervalued and uncertain about their loyalty and confused about why they should commit their workplace performance and purchasing power to corporations and brands that have yet to fully commit to them in their business models. Perhaps this explains why it has become so difficult for companies to attract and retain top Hispanic talent and why Hispanic marketing efforts often deliver underwhelming results.