Human Resource Management
The given title of this essay reflects the diversity management policies and what problems managers face when they try to implement the diversity policies in an organization. Later in this essay, there will be a detailed discussion of how to overcome the issues that are related to cultural change/diversity. The essay relates the theories of how managers should be trained for diversity management and what initiatives they are taking to enhance the capability of the employees and the organization production. Furthermore, what potential problems managers can face whilst introducing diversity management policies and how could these be overcome. There will be some organizational examples to relate with the theory.
Fiedler presented diversity in his quotation and he said “A pretzel shape universe requires pretzel shaped hypothesis” (Fiedler, 1965). Managing Diversity is usually initiated by HRM professionals and managed by department heads, Managers, Line managers and supervisors. An effective diversity management will promote recognition and respect for individual differences found among a group of employees. The idea is to encourage employees to be comfortable with diversity in workplace and develop an appreciation for differences in race, gender, background, sexual orientation or any other factors. A more diverse workplace bring strength to the business that is why most of the companies nowadays recruitment people from different locations of the globe with different thoughts of individuals which could bring more ideological viewpoints to the business. Rather than being guilty and prejudiced by these differences, employees are encouraged to accept the fact of diverse interests, values present in the corporate environment. Diversity present in the organization does not have to slow down productivity or create conflicts; instead the diversity may function as helpful attributes that promote the achievement of the goals and objectives of the organization.
One of the Examples is about Ernst and Young. Ernst and Young's is one of the biggest organizations in UK. At Ernst & Young, diversity is about valuing difference its main focus is to recruit people from different parts of the Globe and managers face many problems due to different school of thought of the employees. The top management has a keen focus on how to deal with diversity management explores some of the opportunities and challenges faced by employers as they work at reducing their employment costs for achieving their full potential. A business challenge became more complex and now organizations should think with wide spectrum of views and opinions. EY recognise differences as a way of harnessing the individual and combined talents of their people. Effective diversity management policies try to mix the visible and non visible similarities and differences between people enabling an environment where everyone feels encouraged and valued, part of the group so that they achieve their targets well ahead. (http://www.ey.com/US/en/About-us/Our-people/About-EY---Diversity-and-inclusiveness) [date accessed Nov 09]
Diversity management policies:
Every organization has their own policies to tackle with diversity in their own organization, though it is very important for the managers to make some arrangements to successfully implement their affirmative action which encourage their employees. Therefore managers should take initiatives to provide training for all people throughout the organization to make it sure that everyone is being treated as equal. For example some organization has reward policies for their employees to attract and encourage individuals with the skills, abilities which bring performance outcomes which will further support the achievement of the business goal. (Armstrong and Baron, 1998)
Set the target plans, so that managers and staff have a clear idea that what they have to achieve and when they have to achieve. Line managers should monitor the present situation of the organization to achieve the objectives. Review recruitment, selection and promotion and training procedures regularly to make sure that diversity management policy delivered appropriately. Recruitment agencies offer free pre-employment training where needed, to prepare successful and potentially skilled applicants. Make positive actions to help ethnic minority employees to apply for certain roles in and be a part of the company. Some organizations have policies of flexible working and career breaks particularly for women to help them meeting their family responsibilities. For example in banking Lloyds TSB, in retail Sainsbury's has maternity leave policy to ensure that they are complying with diversity and equality policies. (Beardwell and Claydon, 2007) Managers should keep in mind that holding the negative attitudes towards their employees lead to loosing trust on them and later on business could be affected by that approach. For that reason, line managers who often are involved in decision making should not be prejudiced. (Heery and Noon, 2001) Every person has their own views and thoughts and these are different from others. Keeping in mind, their difference must be appreciated by the managers to avoid discrimination. Managers should not treat them in a same way. But however, sometimes treating them differently might raise the issues of discrimination.
For example, Lady applies a job in a certain organization selling some products in a company that are dominated by men. There could be two possible scenarios. She has the same qualification and experience like the male applicants do but they might reject her because she cannot fit with competitive and aggressive culture of the organization. Secondly, she has similar qualification but she has taken career breaks for childcare purpose, they might reject due to the less work experience compared to men. If managers think other than the concept of “difference” and “sameness” they could have reach to the better solution. This shows that managers have a key role in dealing with diversity management issues. (Beardwell and Claydon, 2007)
Taking full advantage of the benefits of diversity in the workplace is not without its challenges. Organizations face challenges while trying to implement diversity management policies. Communication challenges are often seen between managers and employees especially in small organization. Like in retail markets employees are not that much of qualified to understand foreign languages. Cultural and language barriers need to be overcome for diversity programs to succeed. Ineffective communication of key objectives results in confusion, lack of teamwork and reduced productivity. There are always employees who will refuse to accept the fact that the social and cultural makeup of their workplace is changing. Managers find difficulties to cope with these kinds of issues. So the first step is to analyse the present culture and determine the actions required. Diversity training alone is not sufficient for organization's diversity management plan. A strategy must be created and implemented to create a culture of diversity that saturate every department and function of the organization.
Promote a mind-set of openness in the organization to take benefits from the diverse employees Encourage employees to express their ideas and opinions and attribute a sense of equal value to all. Promote diversity in leadership positions. This practice provides visibility and realizes the benefits of diversity in the workplace. Utilize diversity training. Use it as a tool to shape your diversity policy. Launch a customizable employee satisfaction survey that provides comprehensive reporting. Use the results to build and implement successful diversity in the workplace policies. The best way to treat with employees in an organization is to treat them uniformly. It has many advantages for managers; it may protect them from complaints which include personal and legal. New paradigm of multiculturalism management encourages to work as a team which is more productive.
As the workplace become more diverse nowadays, managers can face more stress. It is a massive task to deal with different people at the same time and fulfil their needs, so it is essential for management to understand the individual differences and treat them vigilantly, professionally and give employees the awareness of teamwork. Promote a reward scheme for minorities and treat them as they are the backbone of the organization. Take the views from each individual for the planning their tasks and arrange conferences so that could bring employees more closely to each other.