An Exploration of Diversity Practices in Small Successful Companies


  • Sandra Powell Weber State University
  • H. Lon Addams Weber State University
  • Brian Davis Weber State University


This exploratory study looks at small publicly-held businesses in the Forbes 200 lists of 1995 and 1996 to determine the extent to which they have formal practices to promote diversity in their workforce and their success (and problems) with those practices.  Formal diversity practices were found in about one-quarter of the responding companies. While the CEOs in all companies indicated satisfaction with the amount of attention spent on diversity efforts, those with formal practices on average gave themselves "C" grades in terms of the effectiveness of their specific programs.  The most successful elements of formal diversity programs included family-friendly policies and policies against prejudice (graded B+).  Suggestions are made for developing diversity programs.


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How to Cite

Powell, S., Addams, H. L., & Davis, B. (1998). An Exploration of Diversity Practices in Small Successful Companies. Journal of Small Business Strategy, 9(2), 77–90. Retrieved from