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Michael Watson on Diversity
Watson recently penned an editorial for Diversity Executive magazine entitled, "STEM Needs Diversity."Congratulations are in order for Michael Watson, GSUSA's senior vice president, human resources and diversity, for authoring "Chapter 9—The Importance of Diversity" in the best-selling book, Nonprofit Management 101: A Complete and Practical Guide for Leaders and Professionals (Jossey-Bass, 2011).
The book hit #1 on Amazon.com's Nonprofit Book List and Michael, who has written a number of articles in other prestigious publications, continues to be sought after for his expertise in—and commitment to—fostering diversity and inclusion in the workplace.
For more articles by Michael on this subject, check out the following:
Michael Watson is GSUSA's Senior Vice President of Human Resources and Diversity. As part of this unique role—the term "diversity" was added to Watson's title in 2009—Watson is dedicated to ensuring the organization is a magnet for the best and brightest employees.
"To meet the needs of girls, we need the nation's most talented employees," Watson says. "Diversity is important since no demographic group has a monopoly on talent. Moreover, failure to recognize the evolving needs of different segments of the workforce places your organization at a competitive disadvantage. Employees who can make the most difference in your organization will go elsewhere if their needs are not met."
Watson says that girls become more diverse every year and live in an increasingly complex world. "The quality of our employees determines how well we serve girls—and our girls deserve the best. Competition for talent will increase as the job market improves. Our ability to hire, retain, and fully engage the diverse perspectives of skilled and enthusiastic employees will result in innovative strategies and solutions that will help us achieve our mission of building girls of courage, confidence, and character, who make the world a better place."
Watson and his team find top-notch employees through a variety of venues and events, including nonprofit career fairs, the Asian Diversity Career Expo, The Wall Street Journal Diversity Executive Career Fair, the annual legislative conference of the Congressional Black Caucus, The New York Times Diversity and Inclusion Job Fair, and many other outlets.
"Our staffing team," says Watson, "plays an important role in letting potential candidates know that in addition to being a great place for girls and volunteers, Girl Scouts is an organization in which individuals can work and use their skills to make a difference in the lives of girls and our society."
He continues, "Since we do not have the recruiting resources of Fortune 500 companies, we have to be creative. Sometimes we partner with other nonprofits to share the costs at recruiting events and increase the visibility of nonprofit careers."
To retain talent, GSUSA's Human Resources team monitors best employment practices, implementing them when possible.
"It's an exciting time to work in Human Resources," says Watson. "I have the opportunity to work for an organization with a dedicated and skilled HR team, a CEO who deeply believes in the importance of diversity, and nonprofit colleagues who are willing to share ideas and work together across organizations. It is an honor to work for Girl Scouts, where diversity is so strongly valued and where dedicated people work every day to help girls across the nation reach their potential."