Friday, November 25, 2011

Diversity and the Workplace

Sexuality and gender identity-based culturesImage via Wikipedia

Diversity in the workplace works best when leaders comprehend its true meaning and put in place dynamic structures for success that benefit the organization and everyone involved. Organizations that fail to observe diversity in the workplace have more legal problems than those that are keen at following the right procedures. Modern leaders will require assimilating or integrating diverse cultures to ensure smooth running and operation of the organization involved. Organizations will require more focus on diversity-related issues as the world undergoes political, social, and economic revolutionary changes that emanate from aggressive globalization and human contact, migratory patterns and demographic intermingling.

Challenges to diversity in the workplace include how to implement diversity-related policies, diversity management, and communication. Because select leaders in an organization may be unwilling to implement changes to diversity due to having different perceptions, there could be cause for failure in implementing policies related to diversity. Winning the hearts and minds of the top echelons before embarking on a collective measure reduces rifts and misunderstandings that emerge the last minute. Fear of failing to implement the new policy and having the perception that it will end in failure are some of the factors that cause a section of leaders to stay distant from its execution.

Lack of proper communication can restrain the accomplishment of diversity in a workplace. Communication should be directed at all levels of organization so that everyone having a stake in the organization can be aware of requirements for achieving successful diversity in business. Organizations have different ways of dealing with conflicts and confusions in the workplace depending on level of consciousness, leadership perception, and general unity. Some burning issues that need greater attention include gender, race, sex, and culture issues and sexual orientation. According to Hickman (1998), it is imperative that leaders identify business culture and have an understanding of diversity. Recognizing, appreciating, and giving value to the skills of people of diverse backgrounds add value to the prestige and working styles of any organization from a holistic approach.


Hickman, G.R. (1998). Leading organizations: Perspectives for a new era. Thousand Oaks, CA: SAGE Publications.
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