Over the past few years, more and more corporate leaders and consultants have been talking about a “new” kind of workplace diversity: cognitive diversity, which can also be referred to as diversity of thought.
All the attention it’s getting is something of a double-edged sword, though. On the one hand, it’s great that so many people are beginning to see that cognitive diversity plays an important role in a business’s success.
But on the other, the term itself is getting thrown around so much—often in very general or superficial ways—that it risks becoming just another piece of meaningless jargon.
Cognitive diversity isn’t just new packaging on an old idea about the dangers of surrounding yourself with “yes men.” It’s also not just another way of saying that if you let conflicting ideas and perspectives rub up against each other for a long enough time, eventually something positive will come from it.