The numbers are clear. Dramatic changes in the U.S. demographic landscape are showing that the non-minority groups are facing a decline in size, while the minority population is experiencing exponential growth. Over the last five decades, the Hispanic population alone grew from 6.3 million to 55.3 million. The U.S. Census Bureau estimates that by 2060, Hispanics will account for over 28 percent of the entire U.S. population or 119 million people.
Additionally, the buying power of Hisplanic consumers is keeping pace with the exponential demographic growth. According to Statista in 2015, “Hispanics spent $1.5 trillion U.S. dollars in the retail and CPG market.” With a purchasing power that is projected to reach $1.7 trillion by the end of 2017, Hispanics are the most important agents driving economic growth in the U.S.
Among Hispanic people, Latinas are becoming an economic powerhouse. According to the Nielsen Latina Power Shift report, Hispanic women are the primary decision-makers in the Hispanic households. But Latinas are not just thriving in the marketplace; They are also making great strides in education, politics and the workplace. A Nielsen report indicated that 74 percent of Latina high-school graduates are now enrolled in college, outpacing Latino men, Caucasians and African Americans.
Today, Latinas are more qualified to serve in high-ranking positions than ever before, yet the corporate mindset has not drawn a correlation between the Hispanic market share and the representation of Latinas and Hispanic people in general in the C-suite and corporate boardrooms. This disparity creates a negative perception and jeopardizes Hispanic consumer trust.
Factors at play
Globalization, emerging markets and major demographic changes are key factors Corporate America must recognize in order to stay relevant to Hispanic people. Companies that encourage diversity and inclusion in every aspect of their business understand that investing in diverse high-performance talent will result in a comprehensive and sustainable market presence that will translate into market dominance.
Looking ahead, the inclusion of Hispanics will constitute a competitive advantage. The responsibility of Hispanic executives is to function as role models in the community and educate Corporate America about the advantages of having Hispanic workers in upper-level management positions while paving the way for other qualified Hispanics to become an integral part of Corporate America.