Diversity in the WorkplacePosted by Asia Metropolitan University on November 23, 2021 at 4:06 pm
Workplace Solutions Consulting LLC is a consulting company that helps organizations increase performance through workforce enhancement. You are a consultant for WSC and have been assigned to a project involving a large technology company, Informational Systems Inc. The company is considering some organizational changes in order to better respond to rapid changes in the business environment. You are to meet with different departments and areas of the company in order to analyze and evaluate the status quo. At the end of your investigation, you and your team will present recommendations for change in the organization.
Prior to your first on-site meeting with IS personnel, you review a list of issues that have been collected through initial conversations with the new client. One of the issues that has been identified for further evaluation involves the multi-generational nature of the workforce in the software development area at IS. There seems to be a fair amount of friction being reported between the staff. Due to the company’s rapid growth through the acquisition of smaller technology companies, the organization has grown a development organization consisting of Baby Boomers, Generation X, and Millennials. You meet with members of the software development organization to document the multi-generational issues that have been reported—namely that people are not getting along and working well together. During your meeting, you notice that the individuals representing the Baby Boomers are predominately white males, while the Millennials seem to be comprised of people from foreign nationalities, people of color, and women.
Recall the benefits and challenges of having a diverse workforce utilizing what you have learned from the course content and your subsequent class discussions. Think about individual biases. Then explain what steps would you take to foster an inclusive organization? How would you ensure that it is maintained and enhanced?
- 49 Replies
- MemberNovember 23, 2021 at 8:02 pm
Decades of research has proven that inclusive and diverse teams are better teams. Companies who leverage the full power of their people are companies that are successful in the marketplace. Inclusion and diversity stimulate creativity and innovation. An inclusive workplace can enhance an organization’s brand and reputation. With this diversity in mind, let us discuss further on how to identify unconscious bias and how to disrupt it to promote an inclusive work environment.
Unconscious bias is our very human and instinctual reaction to other people’s differences or sameness to us. Although we do not mean to stereotype or think less or more of people based on their differences from us, but it is our natural way of navigating the world. The first step of disrupting unconscious biases is to understand about diversity. The first thing we noticed about others is called visible diversity such as gender, skin color, physical traits, age, socio-economic status, and body size. As we subconsciously process data, our brains place the person into categories.
Then as we learn more about a person, our brain further categorizes them based on perceived differences or similarities to us and our prior experiences. This is represented by what is known as invisible diversity such as marital status, religion, gender identity, sexual orientation, values, and beliefs. To foster an inclusive organization, we need to remind ourselves that we are human and naturally have instincts that drive us to categorize others. As a result, we need to be aware of and work to remove bias from our views of others so that we can maximize our working relationship and drive business success.
There are three ways that an organization can embrace diversity and disrupt unconscious bias:
1. Be Aware.
Employees need to be reminded about the importance of looking for potential areas of biases within themselves and their team. This can be done through mandatory trainings for new employees and yearly refresher trainings. These trainings should provide examples of such biases that can occur through scenario-based explanations. These trainings should also reinforce the need for employees to choose their words carefully, to consider abilities when making decisions and learn ways on how to identify biases and how to address them.
2. Practice Inclusion
Leaders in the organization must communicate the commitment towards inclusion in the workplace. Leaders should walk the talk and influence change in the organization towards being more inclusive. Role models that champion diversity and inclusion in the organization should be publicly recognized using the appropriate communication strategies. As part of employee engagement activities, event should be organized for a wide range of community and cultural events without any restrictions for participations. Avenues should also be able available where employees can speak up confidentially if they witness or personally experience discrimination or exclusion. They should be allowed to report such incidents without the fear of retaliation.
3. Review policies and processes
Policies for anti-discrimination should be included as part of the organization’s standards of business conduct that employees need to adhere to. This will set standards for inclusive practices for example during meetings and conference calls. Employees should also be encouraged to review their processes and the way they work to poke holes in the norm if they feel that a process can be done more inclusively.
- MemberDecember 14, 2021 at 4:59 pm
Hi Leonard, good explanation on unconscious bias matter and how we can disrupt it by understanding about diversity and its benefits in maximizing organization’s performance.
- MemberDecember 8, 2021 at 5:56 pm
Most businesses understand the need of diversity and inclusion initiatives in order to better represent their communities. Workplace inclusion is a strategy for maximizing organizational performance and results by utilizing each person’s unique and distinctive strengths. Let’s define diversity and inclusion for a better understanding.
Diversity can be considered any dimension that differentiate a person from another.
Inclusion refers to creating an environment or culture in which employees share a sense of belonging, mutual respect, and commitment from others so that can perform their best work. Inclusion allows organization to capitalize not only on the diversity of employees but also the diversity of customers, suppliers and community partners.
Some of the steps we can take to foster an inclusive organization are as follows:
1. Acknowledge unconscious bias.
What’s unconscious bias?
It’s usually defined as any prejudice or presumption made in favor of or against a person or a group. Exclusion might be caused by subtle biases. To guarantee that all individuals or groups are involved, leaders should ensure that all members of their team have access to appropriate training, personal growth, and professional networks, etc.
2. Establish a meeting agenda.
By drafting a meeting agenda, leaders can ensure that everyone is on the same page when arranging meetings. This makes it easier for people who are more introverted and less confident in their ability to speak up. Each team member can prepare ahead of time in order to participate in the discussion.
3. Focus on responsibilities rather than personalities or cultures.
In relation to point number 2, it can be beneficial to explicitly document each employee’s tasks and responsibilities. As a result, it becomes evident who should be contributing what and when. As an instance, if an engineer collaborates with design team to drive product decisions, it will be great if there is a clear documentation on who are expected to contribute based on their expertise. This will greatly minimize decision that are influenced or affected by opinions from someone who are extrovert. With the defined roles and responsibilities, it becomes more natural to talk about your work and seek advice from others.
4. Pay attention when employees speak up.
One of the most significant impediments to true inclusion is the dismissal of employee concerns. It’s almost never done on purpose. Instead, it occurs because there is a disconnect between what we see in others and what they are going through within. Leaders must work to comprehend it and must commit in working to improve it. Questioning the validity of their viewpoint is not only rude, but it also goes against the spirit of inclusiveness, which is to value all points of view.
To ensure the inclusion maintained and enhanced, it involves more than just effective training programs. It requires a long-term culture reform effort that includes top management backing.
Diversity policies and procedures should be implemented in the areas of recruitment, hiring, training, and development.
Besides that, administration also need to conduct diversity related surveys among employees to evaluate managers progress on diversity goals. Moreover, organizations should also work to improve diversity and inclusion among suppliers and vendors, as well as in the communities where they do business.
Halcrow, A. (2018). How to Foster an Inclusive Organization. CultureWizard. https://cdn2.hubspot.net/hubfs/2327869/PPL_WF/PPL_WF_Culture%20Wizard_2018/How%20to%20Foster%20an%20Inclusive%20Organization.pdf
Hart, M. (2020). 6 Tips for Fostering Inclusivity on Your Team. OwlLabs. https://resources.owllabs.com/blog/inclusivity
- MemberJanuary 3, 2022 at 9:39 am
It’s important when we are considering the unconscious bias within the workspace environment. Because it will led to various sensitive topics with will impact the harmony of the company and affect the performance.
- MemberDecember 8, 2021 at 8:47 pm
The advantage of workplace diversity is that employees of diverse backgrounds enrich the company with creative new ideas and perspectives shaped by cultural experience. Diverse workplaces help companies better understand their targeted demographic groups and their motives. It also increases customer satisfaction by improving the way employees interact with a wider variety of customers and the general public. However, the diverse workforce also has challenges such as communication issues, cultural misunderstandings, and discrimination.
Bias is a natural tendency to agree or disagree with an idea, object, group, or individual. Unconscious or implicit prejudice is an attitude that is unknowingly retained and influences the way people think and feel about others around them.
In order to manage diverse workplaces, organizations need to ensure that they communicate effectively with their employees. Policies, procedures, safety precautions, and other important information should be designed to overcome linguistic and cultural barriers through the translation of materials and the use of images and symbols where appropriate. Avoid guessing about employees with different backgrounds. Instead, consider each employee as an individual and perform to determine success or failure rather than ascribe action to the background. Encourage employees to work in different groups. A diverse work team allows employees to know and appreciate themselves individually and help eliminate prejudices and cultural misunderstandings. Aligning standards with objective standards. Establish a unified rule standard for all employee groups, regardless of the background. Ensure that all employment behavior, including disciplinary action, is treated equally by all employees in accordance with these standardized standards.
- MemberDecember 24, 2021 at 8:56 pm
Agreed with your point on workplace diversity’s benefits for the organization such as increased productivity, improved cultural awareness, positive reputation for the organization and increase in marketing opportunities.
- MemberDecember 23, 2021 at 1:26 am
Many research found that having a diverse workforce contributes to increase of productivity. When there is a team of diversified employees, we will be able to have distinctive opinions and perspectives within the team to further improve the business, regardless whether its in terms of processes or strategies. With this, we can increase work productivity and provide better innovative ideas for the organizational changes. When there is increased in productivity and innovation, it will lead to increase revenue, because most probably the diverse team is capable of providing services and products to cater to a wider target market, attracting new customers for the business.
However, there are also challenges we need to face if the diverse workforce in the organization is not managed effectively. Such as possibilities of communication barriers and individual biases.
Individual bias is one of the challenges often faced in a diverse environment or workplace. Although many belief that bias is human nature and is difficult to be changed, there are still suggested ways to control individual bias. But before we can work on reducing individual bias, we need to acknowledge and recognize the presence of biasness and that it affects the organization. Example of individual bias are gender bias, ageism, confirmation bias, etc. Gender bias occurs when someone associates certain gender specific stereotypes. Ageism is the discrimination against others based on their age. This can happen to both younger and older team members. Confirmation bias is trying to validate point of views with skewed interpretations to support it.
Having said that, one of the most important way to reduce individual biases is to promote and foster diversity, inclusion, and equity in the workplace. Having a diverse workforce is more straight forward where it can be realized by having headcount with different races, genders, sexual orientation, and educational background. To foster an inclusive organization is more challenging, but the benefit it brings to the organization once succeed is definitely indisputable.
The main goal for organizational inclusion is to build a company culture that everyone in the workforce feels included. The basic requirement we need is that the management of the organization is supportive, and that diversity and inclusion is carved into our core value. Next, managers are considered frontliners when forefacing the employees, therefore it is important that the managers are trained to understand and support diverse teams, so that they are able to lead in cultivating an inclusive culture in the workplace.
Thirdly, the management and the HR functions needs to make sure that the company policies are aligned with the value of inclusion. But before that, make sure to identify the needs and perspectives of the employees so that the strategies carried out are suitable and effective. If there is a need to strengthen the anti-discriminatory policies, do it. Long term wise, it is good to create a team of inclusion council from different departments of the company to review the policies and employee feedback from time to time, in order to maintain the organizational inclusion.
- MemberDecember 25, 2021 at 6:47 pm
Hi Jessy, agree with you on your analysis that there are also challenges in a diverse workforce that ain’t managed effectively. Those examples you provided such as possibilities of communication barriers and individual biases would eventually create a toxic work culture and not helping the organization to grow better.
- MemberJanuary 7, 2022 at 10:38 am
Hi Jessy and Soo Kheng Han, agree with you on your analysis that there are also challenges in a diverse workforce that ain’t managed effectively. This is due to the main challenge is to make each other of different generation to understand the common goal. Make them aware of the power of team work and how each others strength and weakness can compliment each other well as each generations have different thinking.
- MemberDecember 25, 2021 at 7:04 pm
Being compassionate, empathy and open-minded to employees who bring unique experience and expertise to the table can only help my company. Following are the five steps that I would take to foster an inclusive organization
1. Treat everyone with respect. To embrace diversity is to treat everyone with respect. Focus on others before myself by building on their strengths and talents.
2. Promote empathy. The best way to embrace diversity in the workplace is to build my capacity to empathize with employees. In doing so, I would able to truly see the world from their perspective, which drops the barriers of separation and sets the foundation for a genuinely inclusive workplace culture.
3. Ask everyone for their perspective. Diversity is achieved when leaders open up to new ideas and different strategies pitched by any employee. Surrounding myself with or seeking out people of different genders, religions, race, work experience, political leanings, etc. and regularly asking them their opinions and input will lead to higher performance.
4. Spend time with employees of all levels. I encourage everyone to spend time with all levels of employees, including interns when applicable. We should seek diverse, fresh and divergent viewpoints, fostering new perspectives on the most complex issues and business problems.
5. Educate and empower everyone to understand diversity. Empower everyone to understand the value of diversity. A diverse workforce improves employee engagement, increases productivity and sparks fresh perspectives. We should not assume that our leadership teams are fully aware of the benefits of a diverse workforce or that they know how to engage and promote diversity. Providing data-backed education is essential to a long-term commitment.
- MemberDecember 28, 2021 at 2:09 pm
Good points Hans. Especially appreciate the point of spending time. The check-in culture is very important when dealing with a diverse workforce. This is especially during the current pandemic where many employees might be working remotely. Checking in with them for example quick chats and 1×1 sessions can foster that inclusive feeling and lead to the feeling of being appreciated in the organization.
- MemberJanuary 3, 2022 at 12:30 pm
Agree with your point; to educate everyone to understand diversity. Management should take a look on this and close the gap.
- MemberJanuary 7, 2022 at 11:42 pm
Good point. As diversity comes with its disparities in many aspects, it is only right to take measures to overcome the differences, and it all started with respect.
- MemberJanuary 7, 2022 at 11:57 pm
Agree on you, the first step is always start with us being respect to each other.
- MemberDecember 26, 2021 at 2:32 pm
A couple of steps can be discussed: how organizations maintain and enhance in a diverse workforce environment.
1st: Create mentorship programmes to increase diversity
Integrate inclusion into the fundamentals of your recruitment processes, from university recruitment fairs to internship programmes, to ensure that you are recruiting from a diverse pool of candidates. While having a mentor with a similar background, race, or culture may feel natural, there is significant value in collaborating with a diverse viewpoint and perspective.
2nd: Recognize and respect all religions and cultures
While it is difficult, if not impossible, to make all holidays a company-wide closure (history has left us with so many special days to commemorate), there are ways to strengthen and increase cultural diversity and celebration in the workplace.
3rd: Employ diversity managers
To make diversity and inclusion a priority, you must hire individuals who exemplify this ideal. The diversity manager will be responsible for developing, recognizing, and implementing diversity-related policies and practices throughout the organization. More large corporations that embrace diversity and racial equality in the workplace, the more future generations, including those young pupils, may think that the professions they aspire to one day will exist.
Lastly: Make diversity training available to managers on an opt-in basis without being coercive.
Rather than holding a single annual workshop or day of training, organize a series of events, celebrations, and programmes to promote ongoing learning and awareness. For example, raising awareness of culturally diverse events throughout the organization. Utilize online diversity calendars to inform personnel of all religious, ethnic, and racial holidays.
The more informed and aware your employees are, the easier it will be to encourage and celebrate diversity while scheduling business hours to accommodate everyone. This activity will contribute to the transformation of diversity training from a lecture to a culture.
- MemberDecember 26, 2021 at 3:27 pm
Benefits and challenges of having a diverse workforce:
• Organizational diversity brings together people with a wide range of experiences, educational qualifications, age groups, and backgrounds in one place.
• Benefit of organizational diversity is individuals get to learn lots of things from each other. In IS case, employees having diverse experience based on their age and cultural background. Young talents are generally keener on upgrading their knowledge as compared to older employees who are used to status quo.
• People tend to connect with others who share similar interests, experiences and backgrounds.
• In IS, we might see several social grouping such as Baby boomers, Millennials, whites, foreign nationalities.
Steps to take to foster an inclusive organization:
• Individuals from different backgrounds and experiences can also sit together, brainstorm ideas and reach to better solutions benefiting the organization.
• Organize teams which has various age groups (ie; Baby boomers to work together with Millennials for a project).
• During festival seasons, everyone can bring their cultural delicacies and have a gathering at workplace. This can introduce people from different backgrounds on their own cultures so everyone is also familiar with others
How to maintain and enhanced all-inclusive organization:
• Leaders need to ensure everyone is given the same level of opportunity in the company regardless of age, race, gender.
• Rewards and incentive plans need to be similar for everyone. Merits should be given based on performance and not seniority or race.
- MemberDecember 26, 2021 at 10:37 pm
Diversity in workplace comes with its benefits and challenges. When you put together people who see the same thing through different lenses (multiple perspectives, worldviews and backgrounds), you are more likely to get creative and innovative solutions. And lets say that there is a problem that requires a solution, diverse people will brings diverse solutions hence the organization can achieve the best well-informed solutions faster. Another big advantage of being a diverse workplace is it will also appeals to potential employees and business partners out there hence the organization have a high chances of being the workplace of choice by employees and business partners. Diverse workplace appeals to employees because it shows that the organization accept and value its employees. Employees feels happier, increased loyalty and reduce the turnover rates.
But being different has its challenges. Diverse workplace often faced issues with communication due to languages, cultural misunderstanding, discrimination, conflicting working styles, issues in navigating visa requirements and employment laws plus the cost to accommodate workplace requirements can be hefty.
Steps to foster inclusive organization and ensure that the change is maintained and enhanced; are as follows – Educate leaders, form an inclusion council, listen to employees, implement identified change and communicate change and inclusion program effectively to the employees.
- MemberDecember 26, 2021 at 11:09 pm
Top down approach in instilling the corporate culture can be one of the way to foster inclusive organization.
Top management can promote a conducive work environment, where diverse workforce are acknowledged in terms of cultural, geological or even biographical diversity. This can only be achieved if the organization is able to break the wall by embracing respect and openness in communications, promote intercultural activities and awareness programs, and equality in daily operations.
It is also important for the organization to be able to create synergy from bottom up by creating commonalities amongst employees thru strong corporate cultures where everyone have the sense of belonging.
With the gap between cultural and biographical characters closed and morale of each individual in the organization is high, any concern can be handled with open door policy, and smaller units within the organization can be assigned challenging but achievable goals, where every part of the team will take ownership in delivering outputs.
- MemberDecember 29, 2021 at 10:43 pm
1)A diverse workforce has been shown to breed creativity and drive innovation, helping to solve problems and meet customer needs in new and exciting ways.
2)Drawing from a culturally diverse talent pool allows an organization to attract and retain the best talent.
3) A diverse skills base allows an organization to offer a broader and more adaptable range of products and services.
1)Professional communication can be misinterpreted or difficult to understand across languages and cultures
2)Different understandings of professional etiquette
3) Conflicting working styles across teams
I would educate my Leaders, and form an Inclusion Council so that the workers can be a part of the council and bond over meetings conducted by the council.I would also insist on celebrating employee differences by celebrating the various festivals and cultures. I would continue to listen to the employees and educate the leaders by providing trainings and inclusivity talks to maintain an inclusive organization.
- MemberJanuary 2, 2022 at 5:31 am
Several lessons are learnt from the course content and class discussions regarding the workforce diversity. One learns that while workforce diversity is gold in a firm, it also has its shortcomings.
A. Recall benefits and challenges of having diverse workforce.
In today’s world workforce is diverse in terms of age, gender, and ethnicity. This diversified population is working simultaneously along with each other. So synchronization of their work values is a key for any organization to become successful and this will lead to job satisfaction among them in turn increase productivity of the organization.
Organization benefit from such diverse workforce also it faces challenges managing them.
Kindly find below benefits of diverse workforce:
1. Increase productivity:
Age diversity can increase productivity as the same is positively related to performance when different aged groups are involved in complex tasks.
Different aged groups, gender and ethnic people come to workplace with their own experience, work values, expectations etc. All these factors can be a major part in fostering innovation for betterment of organization.
3. Reduce employee turnover:
Age diversity can lead to reduce employee turnover as older employees are tend to be loyal and continue their job in one organization as compared with their younger counterparts.
4. Increase in Brand reputation:
Diverse workforce builds brand reputation for organization as this diversity connect organization with different people of society and communities. This in turn leads to building of good national and international relations of company.
5. Global recognition:
As company recruits’ employees of different nationalities as they attract best talent from all over the globe. This also expand company’s business globally and organization receives global recognition.
However, company also face challenges while managing this diverse population:
Organization may face language barriers, perceptual differences among employees. This may lead to lack of communication, confusion in viewpoints this in turn results in lack of morale.
2. Resistance to change:
Change is an inevitable in any environment. Workplace environment is not exceptional for this. However, in diverse workforce few employees can accept the change and some can resist it. So it becomes difficult to formulate inclusive policies of change management.
3. Generational and age differences:
Different age group have different work value orientations. For eg.Baby boomers give more importance to loyalty however millennials give more importance to freedom and innovation. So there can be clashes of values.
4. Lack of sensitivity for different culture:
There may be a lack of understanding regarding social and cultural foundation of employees about each other. This may result in not so good personal and professional relationship between diverse employees.
Organizations need to take precautionary action for maintaining an inclusive organization where each employee feel valued.
B. What steps would you take to foster an inclusive organization? How would you ensure that it is maintained and enhanced?
Organization needs to be aware and sensitize its management and employees regarding diversity. Following steps can be implemented to foster an inclusive organization.
1. Assessment of workforce diversity:
Organization need to introduce employee satisfaction survey which are created considering diverse nature of population. This will give insight to management regarding expectations and challenges employee face in an organization.
2. Development of inclusive workforce plan:
Post assessment of workforce diversity organization need to prepare policies and plans which are inclusive for every employee.
3. Sensitivity training:
Employees need to make sensitive regarding each other’s values, preferences, social and cultural background. This will increase morale of employees and they will get along with each other more easily. It will also foster respect for each other.
4. Implementation of diversity in workforce:
Organization need to enforce these policies which consider each and employee while maintaining decorum of the company. There should be mandatory trainings given to employees. Also leadership team should inculcate respect of diversity to their team.
5. Faster grievance redressal policy:
There should be faster grievance redressal policy implemented in an organization which will closely monitor such issues. Employee should made responsible for their action. Workplace should be considered as a professional place by everyone.
In this way we can foster and enhance an inclusive organization.
- This reply was modified 1 year, 8 months ago by Karen Xaviour.
- MemberJanuary 2, 2022 at 10:25 pm
Having a workplace diversity in an organization is good. The management can value the skills and differences that each staff bring in the workplace. An inclusive environment is when the organization equally provide rights and opportunities for all workers. But we can’t deny that some of the organization didn’t alert on the important to recognize the types of diversity and to ensure that the employee and employer in the workplace are contributing towards a more diverse and inclusive workplace.
One of common issue is bias. One of the examples of unconscious bias is Similarity Bias. Similarity bias is when we like to be surrounded by similar minds who share the same views as ourselves, especially when it was related to fundamental aspects. For example, people from the same country, same state, same religion, which having instant connection which blindsides of other aspects of the communication.
Therefore, to foster and inclusive organization, management should understand the organizational barriers and improve it. There are few ways of fostering inclusivity like be transparent and be honesty, use inclusive language, accept critical feedback, lean into discomfort, assess culture regularly, seek input and value contribution, ensure accountability, and also can offer training to provide tools and skills to address problematic behavior. With this effort, an organization will have an inclusive organization. This will benefit both employer and employee in few aspects like productivity, engagement, retention and also innovation.
To ensure the effectiveness and maintain an inclusive organization, management can obtain responses from employees through observation, sampling, interviews, and quizzes in the organization’s newsletter. Completing a profile of employees based on age, gender, ethnicity, and other factors can reveal the workforce’s diversity and whether it is more diverse than previously, and a job satisfaction survey can reveal the level of understanding and acceptance of the policy.
- MemberJanuary 3, 2022 at 9:38 am
Having a diverse workforce will help to organization to build an innovative team with better productivity and skills. However, there are challenges that the company encounter such as culture differences, languages barrier. The personal bias about others can affect the individual’s behavior by how they interpret the differences between them and others. In order to build an inclusive organization, the first step is to train the leadership for the correct mindset. Then, form a team with diverse team members who have the power of influences. Define the culture of inclusive in the organization and collect the feedback from the employees. And most importantly, we need to cascade the vision and mission to everyone in the company and repeatedly measure the progress to ensure the culture can be maintained.
- MemberJanuary 3, 2022 at 3:21 pm
Recall the benefits and challenges of having a diverse workforce utilizing what you have learned from the course content and your subsequent class discussions. Think about individual biases. Then explain what steps would you take to foster an inclusive organization? How would you ensure that it is maintained and enhanced?
workplace diversity :
Workplace diversity means respecting and valuing the skills and differences that each staff member brings into the workspace. A diverse workplace is an inclusive environment that provides equal rights and opportunities for all workers, regardless of gender, color, age, ethnicity, physical ability, sexual orientation, religious beliefs, and so on. Employer’s are responsible for putting measures into place to overcome employment disadvantage and discrimination in the workplace. This includes valuing workplace diversity and ensuring that a workplace is free from racial and sexual harassment, discrimination, and bullying.
Benefits of workplace diversity include:
A diverse workplace allows for more ideas and processes. This diversity of talent means a broader range of skills among employees, as well as a diversity of experiences and perspectives which increases the potential for increased productivity
Increased creativity: As various cultures and backgrounds work together, the opportunity for increased creativity exists. This is because there are more people with differing perspectives and solutions to problems, allowing for a greater chance of a workable solution to a workplace problem.
Improved cultural awareness: A diverse range of cultures within the workplace allows companies to deal with the different nuances within a global marketplace. If a company does business with China, for example, having an employee who can speak Mandarin is an asset and can lead to improved workplace relations.
A positive reputation: Companies that have a diverse workplace are often perceived as better employers. Potential employees want an employer who accepts and is tolerant of all backgrounds and who treats their employees fairly
Increase in marketing opportunities: If potential employees or customers see that a company represents a diverse workplace, it makes them feel like they can relate to the company more. Using advertising that depicts mature-aged, differently-abled, or ethnically diverse people encourages applicants to apply, promotes a positive reputation, increases marketplace awareness, and generates a more diverse client-base.
Behavioral inclusion: building an inclusive organization through learning journeys:
Many leaders have adopted unconscious bias training in their efforts to build more inclusive organizations.
Unconscious biases are the blind spots that distort our attitudes, actions and decisions concerning those who are different from us. For example, a hiring manager may dismiss the resume of an applicant without a college degree, even after recruiters have deemed the applicant suitable. Unconscious bias training is an important first step toward being an inclusive organization because it gives people a safe space to build self-awareness and recognize their inherent prejudices without feeling judged.
However, training alone hasn’t done much to break down the barriers holding back traditionally underrepresented talent. Awareness doesn’t automatically translate into action. It’s also about building the skills needed to take inclusive actions and make decisions on a moment-by-moment basis.
Designing an effective inclusive behavior learning journey:
As a leader of an inclusive organization, you need to give your employees the opportunity to practice being inclusive.
Familiar work situations such as interviewing, mentoring, managing performance, and conflict resolution can all lead to unconscious bias. By simulating these situations, you can help individuals learn to make judgments based not on assumptions but on a deep understanding and appreciation of difference.
Inclusive behavior learning journey should also teach individuals how to reduce micro-inequities and increase micro-affirmations:
Micro-inequities are day-to-day exchanges that transmit a sense of subordination from one individual to others based on any number of social identities, including race, gender, sexual orientation, socioeconomic background, nationality, religion, and disability. For example: Men monopolizing speaking time and constantly interrupting their female colleagues, Making assumptions about qualifications or abilities that are distinct from work output using outdated language to refer to a racial or ethnic group. These are grounded in an environment marked by generosity, credit-giving, support, and respect for all—the culture of an inclusive organization.
1. Define equality: The inclusive design journey should begin with an explicit declaration of what kind of equality your organization stands for and how it manifests itself in talent management practices and processes.
We must then ensure that the organization’s aspirational statements and policies support this declaration, and that every leader, manager, and employee will ensure that no one is favored or unfavored on the basis of who they are.
2. Unearth inequities: The second step in your organization’s inclusive design journey is to unearth areas where you have disparities in your talent systems.
Ask questions such as:Is the organization living up to its commitments on equality? Do leaders reflect the full diversity of talent pools? Is all talent being paid equally for equal work?
3. Learn from diversity: The only way to ensure your organization’s talent systems aren’t perpetuating inequities is to modify or create systems using input from all employees. You must begin with the needs, wants, and aspirations of the most excluded group rather than assuming similarity, and then build your solutions around that.
4. Solve for one, benefit all : Science and experience show us—and features like closed captioning prove— that if we can make something work for the exception, we will end up with a better design for all, and a more inclusive organization.
Conclusion – building an inclusive organization takes courage and will: To be an inclusive and equitable organization, you need structural and behavioral inclusion interventions, from unconscious bias training to inclusive design.
At a more human level, you need courage and will.
Courage to ask if inequities are present and, when they are, to confront past wrongs and make them right. Courage to enter the environments of those who are different from you, see things from their perspective, and be curious about how they think, feel, and act. Courage to share stories of your own journey and the ways it has shaped how you view and live in the world.
After all that, courage also requires the will to see changes through, acknowledging that to become an inclusive organization, you need more than just one great training experience or high-profile initiative. You need the will to change entrenched but exclusionary cultural norms—and the courage to sustain those changes over time. Senior leaders need to be aligned and fully accountable for the change strategy and its implementation every step of the way.
- MemberJanuary 4, 2022 at 3:18 pm
Diverse and inclusive team members plays a vital role in a workplace.
An organization that gives importance to diversity employees and able to provide inclusive environment that provide equal rights and opportunities for all employees regardless of age, gender, ethnicity , physical abilities and sexual orientation.
Benefits of workplace diversity and inclusion
1) Productivity-A team with diverse team members allows for enriched ideas and processes. Employees with wider range of skills experiences and perspectives allows employees for increase in productivity and provide better business to clients.
2) Creativity-Diverse team members allows inputs for different perspectives , way of handling problems and decision making process
3) Cultural Awareness- A range of cultures within an organization allows companies to deal with in global marketplace. This could lead to attracting clients from diverse range.
4) Positive Reputation-Workplace with diverse workplace have better reputation in the market as employers is tolerant and practice inclusion who treats their employees fairly.
5) Marketing Opportunities-If potential employees or customers see that a company represents diverse workplace, these eventually promotes positive reputation, increases marketplace awareness and generates diverse client pool.
There are ways we can implement unconscious bias in workplaces.
1) Creating awareness
There is always biases in the workplace without us noticing it.
Employees and employers need to understand the unraveling unconscious bias , assess which biases are likely to affect you and the organization.
2) Modernize approach to hiring
Constantly review and rework on the job descriptions as some statements in job description might cause a certain people to withdraw the applications. Employers may consider giving candidate sample assignments to judge the contributions and experience of candidates.
Interview process should be standardized which evaluate candidates from all prospective to prevent bad hiring decisions.
3) Set up D&I Goals
Set goals that holds all employees accountable and allows all employees to speak up on the actions that may cause biases.
5 benefits of diversity in the workplace. Ability Options. (n.d.). Retrieved January 4, 2022, from https://abilityoptions.org.au/about-us/news-events/blog/5-benefits-of-diversity-in-the-workplace