Sarah Miyazawa LaFleur
Sarah Miyazawa LaFleur, Founder & CEO at MM.LaFleur
"I grew up overseas surrounded by a lot of people who were very different from me. For high school, I went to a small, all-girls Catholic school in Tokyo—which I loved. My class had Muslim girls from Pakistan, Hindu girls from India who spoke Japanese as their first language, Japanese girls whose parents were from China, and so many other examples of cultural diversity. I learned to truly appreciate difference and to really listen to everyone’s perspective."
"As a business person, I feel like I’m always searching for that utopia where everyone feels their unique voice is heard. I’d like to think that our company embraces the differences that exist from one employee to the next. As a company, MM.LaFleur is incredibly diverse, and my six-person executive team is made up of seven different nationalities. I always tell my leaders: Hire diversely. It’s not because of some quota we’re trying to meet; it’s because I think that is truly the best environment to work in. I want to be with people who think differently from me, and who push me to see things in a way that transcends my own perspective."
"I find homogeneity disturbing. As a woman in business, I believe there’s nothing creepier than a boardroom chock-full of old white men. What a missed opportunity! I think it’s a fiduciary duty to solicit differing opinions. Your business will be better (and more profitable) the more diverse you are."
From the Huffington Post