Today there are over 900 religious employee resource groups, according to the International Coalition of Workplace Ministries (Cañas & Sondak, 2010). These affinity groups can help encourage religious understanding by offering panel discussions that educate employees on their beliefs. By allowing open discussion, answering religious questions and creating an open, welcoming religious environment in the workplace employees can better relate to one another through shared religious principles (Cañas & Sondak, 2010). When looking at the business case for diversity, not asking employees to hide their faith at work allows for greater productivity, and time and energy focused on business results (Cañas & Sondak, 2010). Often time’s religious differences can create conflict in the workplace if not properly addressed and managed. In my paper I will be analyzing two scenarios of religious differences in the workplace and discuss how management, employees and coworker’s should respond to the situation. After analyzing these situations, I will discuss how Buddhism potentially impacts the workplace and draw upon my opinions to explain the importance of managing religious diversity.
Creating a Religious Diversity Culture
In scenario one a recently hired employee, Sonia, begins to wear loose-fitting clothing and a headscarf to work. This causes Sonia’s employees to start talking behind her back. Sonia can sense these negative sentiments from her coworkers and it causes her to become more self-conscious and less communicative. In this scenario, Sonia’s behavior is most likely due to her religious beliefs. Although I am not sure what Sonia’s religion may be, Orthodox Jewish women often ...
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...nerating the best results from their work.
ACAS (2005). Religion or Belief and the Workplace: A Guide for Employers and Employees. Retrieved from http://www.acas.org/uk/media/pdf/f/l/religions_1.pdf
Cañas, K.A., & Sondak, H. (2010). Opportunities and Challenges of Workplace Diversity:
Theory, Cases, and Exercises (2nd ed.). New Jersey: Prentice Hall.
Gross, Barrie. (2012). Accommodating Religious Beliefs and Practices in the Workplace. All
Business. Retrieved from http://www.allbusiness.com/human-resources/workplace
Marques, J. (2011). Buddhism in the United States: Implications for Managers of Buddhist
Values in the Workplace. International Journal of Management, 28(2), 564-572.
U.S. Equal Employment Opportunity Commission. (2012). Religious Discrimination.
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