We Need Diversity in the Workplace

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Today's workplace is more diverse than it has ever been in history. While the workforce has made strides in the direction of equality, it is still far from attaining total equality in the workplace. A company must value diversity. The main objectives of valuing diversity include awareness, education, and positive recognition of the differences among people in the workforce. Organizations are increasingly emphasizing group work or teamwork as a source of competitive advantage in a diverse workforce. It has been suggested that such organizations must target their recruitment efforts at applicants who are both diverse and amenable to working in teams ( Rau, Hyland 2003).

A cultural environment must allow differences to be celebrated instead of merely tolerated. All employees must understand the competitive and moral advantages of diversity. They must respect and support cultural diversity through the recognition of cultural and religious holidays, observances, practices, and diet restrictions. We are not where we once were, but we are not yet where we should be. In an ideal world, every person is treated equally when it comes to receiving a job, advancing in their career, and being treated fairly in the workplace. In reality, we know this is not the case. Unfortunately our reality is unfair treatment in regards to an individual's gender, race, culture, ethnic origin and lifestyle. These discriminations still exist in salary decisions, hiring, firing, and promotions.

In order to effectively manage diversity, and recognize it as a source of strength and not one of conflict, one would need to be educated and reprogrammed to accept and embrace diversity. Society as a whole is programmed to embrace sameness an...

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...romote diversity in the corporation. These types of training are given to all levels of staff within the organization. They teach employees how to accept the personalities and ideas or thoughts of others. These programs also teach one how to deal with conflicts and prejudice in a professional and civil manner.

A second disadvantage a company may encounter is reverse discrimination. This is a feeling that is associated with affirmative action policies. It is a major argument against such policies. Reverse discrimination is a claim by white males that they have been unfairly discriminated against. They claim they are equally or more qualified for the position, yet were passed over for a minority to receive the job. This can cause lawsuits in some cases, but mostly a sense of rejection by other workers in the company toward the minority who received the position.

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