“There is only one way to see things, until someone shows us how to look at them with different eyes.”
Where do new ideas come from? Innovations that propel our societies forward often come from people who look at the familiar with fresh eyes, connecting and combining what’s previously been separate. For such innovators, crossing boundaries—not only mental boundaries, but sometimes actual physical borders—is the key to imagining new possibilities.
Talented, creative people can be found in every part of the world. Bringing together that diversity of talent enables companies and countries to see things in a new way and, our research shows, ignites the much-needed innovative spark that drives sustainable growth.
A Moral Cause with a Business Case
Reducing the obstacles to global migration, and building bridges to opportunity for talented people regardless of where they were born or what their circumstances might be, is a moral cause that also has a strong business case. The war in Ukraine, along with ongoing conflicts in Afghanistan, Syria, and elsewhere, reminds us that not all migration is voluntary—which only makes the moral cause that much more urgent.
In this “Innovation Without Borders” report, we lay out a pragmatic way forward for business executives who intend to drive creativity and innovation through global diversity. The report is based on a first-of-its-kind survey of executives in 20 industries and 10 countries, the personal beliefs that guide them, and the operational tactics they use. The report also includes the in-depth perspectives of four executives who have seen how rewarding the journey to global diversity can be for an organization—and the struggles that can occur along the way. Here are a few of their insights: