There are lots of them, but I’ll share this one. There’s a woman named Aheda Zanetti who moved from Lebanon to Australia as a child, and she discovered that the dress code for the Australian beach culture is not the dress code for a traditional Muslim woman. She thought, why does it have to be that way? Why can’t I combine my traditional Muslim culture with Australian beach culture? So, she created the burkini.
So, what would the market size of that be? Well, it’s enormous. Her own company, Ahiida, has grown by leaps and bounds. Now this idea and others like it has been picked up by others; Nike last year launched its Nike Pro Hijab for Muslim female athletes.
What’s interesting about Aheda’s innovation, is that if you would’ve asked traditional swimwear makers in the West about the market potential of swimwear for traditional Muslim women, they’d be like, “Well, based on the constraints of their dress—zero.” If you asked most traditional Muslim women they’d probably say the same thing; “zero.” So, both communities would independently, through their individual expertise and experience, believe there’s no market potential.
But what happens when you’re able to bring together these different perspectives? Aheda was able to bring two cultures together—the beach culture she found in Australia, and the culture of her faith. And with those perspectives, she realized the market potential wasn’t zero, it’s actually massive.
The idea here is that diverse perspectives trump experience and expertise in a world where the rules are constantly changing. We’ve become the most connected society in history, and this enormous ability to combine concepts across disciplines and cultures is the world we live in. And the most exciting thing about this realization? It points us to where innovation will happen in the future.
Learn more about how we celebrated the concept to value inclusion, belonging, and equity for all during Workday VIBE Week.