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Diversity is the exclusivity which each and every employee brings the workplace or the work environment in an organization. Talking about diversity, we talk about the group which possesses individual qualities that are diverse from our behavior (Hostager & Meuse 2008). Differences between the employees include nationality, race, gender, work experience and family status. Other differences can be disabilities, physical appearance educational background as well. Valuing diversity at workplace is really important these days. Valuing diversity at workplace means creating a work environment by maximizing the potential of all the employees in which every employee feels included in the team (Hostager & Meuse 2008). By valuing diversity, it means we are acknowledging other's races; cultures have equal state all around the world. Valuing also means acknowledgment that there are many ways of viewing the world which includes solving problems and working together in the same environment.
WHAT IS DIVERSITY?
Diversity in the workplace means when people are getting employed without discrimination i.e. on the basis of gender, age, and ethnic, cultural background, sexual orientation, religious belief or the racial background. Diversity also refers to the other ways such as level of education, experience in life, their social economic background, also their personality and status. Work experience and marital status also covers diversity (Hostager & Meuse 2008). Basically workplace diversity means identifying the values of different individuals and managing them in the environment called workplace.
Managing the diversity at workplace means creating that kind of environment that make use of contribution of people with different backgrounds (DeSouza 2008). So, organizations main perspective is to develop those strategies that can include different background, their perspectives and the family responsibilities for their employees (Hostager & Meuse 2008). They also need to recognize all the contribution that diversity has made for the purposed of generating new ideas and the technique of doing things. Diversity also covers the policy of equal employment opportunity (EEO). All the policies related to the equal employment opportunity are important foundation for the workplace diversity policy (Hostager & Meuse 2008).
HOW DOES WORKPLACE DIVERSITY FIT INTO THE WIDER ORGANIZATION?
Principles of workplace diversity should be incorporated with and highlight all the aspects of human resource management (DeSouza 2008). Aspects can be planning, selection, recruitment, performance appraisal, training and development etc (Hostager & Meuse 2008). All the organization should show their commitment to diversity and should integrate a flexible working condition which allows their employees to balance their work and other responsibilities in the organization.
Basically, workplace diversity strategies help the organization to build the relationship with the community and to enhance the contribution of its employees (DeSouza 2008). It also helps in improving the quality of its programs, products and the services delivered (Hostager & Meuse 2008).
Successful organization's main focus is to inculcate and embed the main principles of diversity in their cultures and the management system. These principles of diversity really values for the organization same ways as they do business (DeSouza 2008). One can easily see the reflection of diversity in their approach to people management. This is the center element in leadership which is reinforced through performance feedback and assessment.
BENEFITS OF WORKPLACE DIVERSITY
Any organization's success and competitiveness depends on the ability to adapt the diversity and realize their benefits. When organization actively assesses their workplace diversity issues and implementation of these diversity plans, some of the benefits can easily be reported which are as follows:
Increase in Adaptability
Large number of solutions with different variety can be supplied to the problems in service just by employing the diverse workforce in an organization. For sourcing and allocating resources solutions can be provided (Hostager & Meuse 2008). Employers from diverse background not only bring the individual talents but also the experiences in suggesting the ideas which are flexible in adapting to the markets which are fluctuating and also the demands of the customer (DeSouza 2008).
Broader service range
Diversity also provides globalization. Diverse collection of employees in an organization provides diverse collection of skills which allows a company to provide the services to customers on global basis.
Multiplicity of viewpoints
Diverse workforce also feels comfortable while communicating with varying points of view which also provides the large number of ideas and experience (Hostager & Meuse 2008). An organization can look at those ideas and views to meet the business strategy needs of the organization (DeSouza 2008). It also meets the needs of the customer more effectively.
More Successful Execution
Diversity at workplace also encourages the employees of the companies to perform to their highest ability (Hostager & Meuse 2008). Strategies can then be executed company-wide which results in higher productivity, profit and also the return on investment.
CHALLENGES OF DIVERSITY IN THE WORKPLACE
For taking the advantages of the benefits of diversity at workplace, one has to face lots of challenges. Some of the challenges are as follows:
Cultural and language barriers need to be overcome for successfully diversity programs to succeed. Ineffective communication results in confusion, lack of team work and also the low morale.
Resistance to change
In an organization there are always some people who will refuse to accept that social and cultural makeup of their workplace is changing day by day (Hostager & Meuse 2008). Old and traditional ways mentally silences the new ideas and also inhibits the progress of the organization.
Implementation of Diversity in the Workplace
Implementation of diversity in the workplace is a intervening challenge to all the advocates of diversity (DeSouza 2008). With the right use of employee assessments and research data advocates must build the customized strategy to maximize the effects of diversity in the workplace for their particular organization.
Successful Management of Diversity in the Workplace
A strategy must be created and executed to create the civilization of diversity that filter through every department and the function of the organization (Hostager & Meuse 2008). Training of diversity alone is not sufficient for the organization's diversity management plan.
STRATEGIES FOR MANAGING DIVERSITY IN AN ORGANIZATION
Assessment of diversity in the workplace
Top companies and organization make assessing and evaluating their diversity as the internal part of the organization and the management system. An employee satisfaction survey can easily accomplish the assessment for the company efficiently. It also helps the management team to decide which challenges and obstacles to diversity are present in your workplace (Hostager & Meuse 2008). It also determines which policies are to be added and which policies to be eliminated. Now to check the success of the workplace plan implementation, reassessment can be done.
Development of diversity in the workplace plan
Selecting the survey contributor or the provider that offers comprehensive reporting is the key decision for organization. This report will be the beginning structure of your diversity in the workplace plan. The plan made must be complete, inclusive, attainable and measurable as well. It is the organization that will decide what changes need to be made and also the timeline for the change to be attained.
Implementation of diversity in the workplace plan
The most important commitment is of the executive and the managerial commitment which is must for the organization (DeSouza 2008). Leaders and managers of different departments must add in various diversity policies into every aspect of the organization's utility and purpose. Another important task is the management cooperation and the participation which is required to create culture which is advantageous to the success of the organization plan.
WORKPLACE DIVERSITY SOLUTIONS
If possible involve all the employees in the organization in putting together and executing the diversity initiatives in the workplace (Hostager & Meuse 2008).
Encouraging employees of different department, to freely express their ideas and opinions, which give them, sense of equality among them.
Training for the employees, this can be used to shape up various diversity policies in the organization.
Assessment results to build and implement successful diversity in the workplace policies. As the economy is becoming global, the workforce in the organization is becoming increasingly diverse as well (Hostager & Meuse 2008). Success and competitiveness of the organization depends on the capability to manage the diversity in the workforce effectively.
Evaluating organization's diversity policies and plan for the future.
A diverse workforce is a reflection of a changing world these days. Diverse workforce in the organization brings the high values to the organization. Giving respect to all the nationalities working in the organization will benefit the workplace just by creating a competitive edge and also the increase in productivity as well (DeSouza 2008). By managing diversity at workplace benefits the employees by creating a fair and safe environment for them. Everyone in the organization has the access to opportunities and the challenges. Management tools in a diverse workforce should be used for giving education to all the employees about diversity and its issues which includes law and education (DeSouza 2008). Around the world, most of the places are made up of diverse cultures. So organization should learn how to adapt to them.