My mom has multiple sclerosis. She was diagnosed when I was just 10 years old. I remember thinking then, and many times since, that she would miss out on so many things because of it. Yet, despite it, my mom is still sassy-strong and living a full life. She was determined to go places, see things, be the best mom and grandmother. And she did. She figured out what needed to change so she could accomplish her goals. She asked for what she needed. She made her needs clear. And she made us all better for it. She has greatly influenced me in the many business conversations I’ve had about disability inclusion throughout my entire career.

My experience is unique, yet many others have their own. According to the World Health Organization, approximately 1.3 billion people—16% of the global population—are living with a disability. So it’s hardly a stretch of the imagination to suggest this is an issue that connects to all of us, and it’s vital that we collectively rise to the challenge of greater disability inclusion.

Not only is it the right thing to do for humanity, but it’s also the smart thing to do for business. Inclusion across every capacity leads to greater innovation, stronger ideas, better teaming, and overall better business.

In “The Disability Inclusion Imperative,” a joint report by Accenture and Disability:IN, we learned that companies that go above and beyond in in their disability inclusion efforts drive more revenue, net income, and profit. They are also approximately 25% more likely to outperform their peers in productivity, as measured by revenue per employee.

The research uncovered how “disability inclusion leaders”—those companies that stand out for best-in-class leadership in areas specific to disability employment and inclusion—generally produce 1.6 times more revenue than other surveyed companies, 2.6 times more net income, and fully twice as much economic profit.

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