As we enter the new phase of modern labor, diversity in the workforce is rapidly increasing. Employees now reflect a diversity of cultural perspectives, ethnic backgrounds, ages, genders, physical abilities, and levels of education. This wave of multiculturalism is here to stay and cannot be ignored by the present workers or students that are preparing to take charge of the future workforce. It is in need of attention in order to uphold the well-being and success of businesses and organizations all over the world.
What is diversity? Why does it matter? Can it be managed? This are only simple questions that I ask to my self of the millions of questions that workers have all over the world. What kind of environment would I and other managers have to create to educate employees about cultural diversity?
In order to understand the necessities and benefits of managing workplace diversification, the concept must be explored. This fundamental belief has led to changes in management practices primarily relating to the recruitment, training and retention of employees specially the changing face of the workforce, creating equal privileges and opportunities for every human being.
What is diversity?
There are several definitions of diversity that exists in literature. Some definitions range from narrow to vary broad. Those that are narrow tend to reflect the laws of affirmative action and equal employment opportunities such as race, gender, ethnicity, age, national origin, religion, and disability. Broad definitions tend to include sexual preference and orientation, values, education, language, economic status, marital status, lifestyle, and beliefs.
Another part of the definition is known as the layers of diversity that are personality & organizational dimension. Personality is the innate elements that make you unique as an individual and organizational dimension is the work content/ field, division department / unit / group; seniority; work location; union affiliation; management status; functional level / classification. One example defines diversity as a matter of individual responsibility and morality. Another definition describes diversity as creating high performing organizations through valuing and using all the talents of employees of different groups.
Workplace diversity builds on the trad...
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...h individual to be realized, ultimately strengthening all of society.
Managing Diversity in the workplace is more than just an acquired skill; it is "a way of thinking”. It is reflective of an attitude that organizations and their staffs must adopt that allows them to change their basic concepts about workers and converts “them” into “us”.
1. Dobbs, Matti and Brown, Oliver, (Summer 1997): 53-56. "A Vital Link: The Supervisor's Role in Managing Diversity," The Public Manager
2. Nieto, Sonia & Loagman, (1992). Affirming Diversity, New York.
3. Hellriegel, Don, Slocum, John W. (2003) Organizational Behavior 10th edition.
4. Johnson, Walter (1999), Typical Workplace Diversity Strategy,
5. Dobbs, Matti F. (Summer 1998) “Managing Diversity: The Department of Energy Initiative," PublicPersonnel Management 27 vols. No. 2 : 161-173.
1. Norton, Karl, (October 2003), Journal of Financial Times.
2. Jackson, Randy, ( May 2003), Diversity Management Magazine.
2. Wentling, Rosemary, "Diversity Training in the Workplace," http://nerve.berkeley.edu/CW73/WIPIL.html
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