The modern business environment is marked by numerous people-oriented variables brought to organizations. These variables include gender, race, age, and religion, and socioeconomic background, regional and national origin. All these factors form the current workforce in the market place. Diversity is widely recognized as one of the world's greatest strengths. Diversity continues to affect the society and the organizational workforce in the process of shaping the 21st century workforce (Konrad, 2006). Organizations appreciate individual sensitivity and differences to enable them discharge the organizational mission. Sensitivity and training on diversity focuses on changing valid standards and expectations of people. This paper gives details on understanding diversity. Although the scope is limited, it highlights how the understanding of diversity is a challenge in managing the current workforce. It remains a fact that the contemporary workforce does not have the same desires as the previous workforce.
Work diversity is the most challenging and the hardest experience. Managing and valuing diversity touches on peoples' values, emotions and beliefs. It demands that people must change their behavior. It demands that organizations must question and change their systems, policies and practices some of which have never been questioned for centuries. Besides, they have contributed to the organization's values, traditions, and ultimate success (Albrecht, 2011).
Change resistance is significant in diversity interventions. Oppressing employees for years makes them impatient. On the other hand, employees who have been in power for long tend to resist power sharing. Many of these issues require the workplace to become different from most organizational training and development settings. The mediations tend to differ in terms of total quality management trainings, supervisory skills, performance management and production controls. Diversity affects the wider part of an organization and individuals within an organization. The most difficult task is managing diversity (Dansby, Stewart & Webb, 2011).
Value of Diversity in the Workplace
Diversity benefits both employees and associates. While associates tend to be interdependent, recognizing individual differences increases productivity. Workplace diversity reduces lawsuits and increase recruitment, marketing opportunities, business image and creativity. In an environment where creativity and flexibility are keys to competitive advantage, diversity is crucial for the success of an organization. Besides, organizations should not overlook the consequences like loss of money and time (Prasad, 2007).
The development of diversity must incorporate awareness and integration. Individuals with differing foundations and physical aspects must be incorporated into the groups. This will enable them to arrange and execute organizational tasks with a defined goal where their thoughts and skills are utilized besides being recognized. This thinking approach expedited the idea of diversity management. Diversity management is a manifestation of human resource management. It addresses the numerous ways representatives are distinctive but are sometimes equivalent (Cornelius, 2012). Diversity management goes past race and sexual orientation and includes other aspects like gender, disability, and religion. It is not about white men managing ladies and minorities: it is about all administrators empowering whoever is in their workforce.
Diversity management refers to approaching diversity at three levels synchronously: organizational, interpersonal and individual. The traditional focus has been on singular and interpersonal angles alone. What is new is seeing differing qualities as an issue for the whole company, including the exact way associations are organized. Diversity management is managing the way associations are supervised, and the way supervisors do their jobs (Dansby, Stewart & Webb, 2011). It is granulated in a given definition in management making an environment that permits the individuals being managed to achieve their full potential. It means getting from workers not only everything, they anticipate, but also all they have to offer.
Diversity management accepts that accommodation is a two-way road, a shared process between the organization and the individual against the normal assimilation approach, where the trouble of acclimating rests singularly on the person who is diverse. At least, unlike natural methodologies, diversity management is not a project, not a coordinated set of activities intended to do something. It calls for the reformation of individual behaviors resulting in the essential change in the company's lifestyle and task execution.
Diversity Management and its Dimensions
Diversity in the workplace is the industrialized planet's enduring underdog. Individuals' knowledge of diversity, diversity management conceptions, and diversity ideals are important because they address recruitment and events after the process. The worldwide economy has shifted diversity to the highest point of the business agenda. Worker immigration, immigration, ethnic, or gender distinctions have continued to change workforce composition resulting in diversity. The organizational literature started emphasizing the business case for assorted qualities in the late 1980s (Cornelius, 2012). The organization's case anticipated many profits from remarkable workforce diversity within it. A few studies reframe diversity from a paradigm that emphasizes contrast to one that emphasizes relationships. They contend that relation methodology highlights the individual, intergroup, and interpersonal elements that affect individuals' ability to decipher and act on their differences.
From this view, contrast can likewise be a source of resilience and creativity. As a work group characteristic, diversity generates challenges and chances that are not displayed in homogenous work teams. In this way, managing diversity means comprehending its impacts and actualizing behaviors, work practices and approaches that react to them in a successful way. Cultural diversity is a major issue in managing diversity. Roberts (2008) characterize cultural diversity as distinctions around colleagues in race, ethnicity, sexual orientation, religion, nationality, or different measurements of social character that are featured by a history of oppression, discrimination and group prejudice.
Cost Related Benefit of Diversity
Diversity is more profitable when the company needs to extend its view, procedure plans, or the approach, reposition the firm, and reposition system from blocks and mortar in an e-business environment. It is also essential when a firm wants to launch another item, make a new concept, advance a new marketing plan, outline another operation, or evaluate rising patterns from different views. Assuming that diversity is decently administered, firms can profit from both synergistic and culture advantages incorporating upgraded innovativeness, adaptability, and issue solving skills. When administered viably, diversity might be a source of competitive advantage for organizations. Organizations that can expect and react to change can thrive in today's business climate. Surely, agility and the ability to change require the capability and readiness to study, which requires diversity. A more diverse workforce will expand organizational viability. It will lift confidence, enhance productivity and generate greater access to new market segments in the industry (Dansby, Stewart & Webb, 2011).
Frequently, diversity causes issues in concurrent processes, on occasion when the company needs workers to think or to act in comparative ways. Diversity renders correspondences and reconciliation more troublesome. Individuals from diverse society neglect to comprehend each other. They do not work in the same routes or same place (Albrecht, 2011). The potential for expanded complexity, ambiguity and confusion is elevated when the company or project demands clarity and direction. Convergence expanding diversity exhibits a twofold edged sword. Consequently, the challenge of diversity management is to make conditions that minimize its potential as a performance restraint while boosting its potential to upgrade organizational capabilities.
Approaches and Strategies for Managing Diversity
The ability of managers to establish cultural diversity and its possible disadvantages and advantages defines a company's approach to managing that diversity. Three methodologies exist to administer the differing qualities like Parochial, Synergistic and Ethnocentric (Shakhray, 2009). From the three, synergistic methodology assumes social possibility; the ideal route relies on the exact societies of the individuals involved. This approach distinguishes both the semblance and distinctions around the societies that create a worldwide organization. It recommends that we should not overlook or minimize cultural differences, but view it as an asset in planning and improving organizational frameworks.
A case in point is HP, which is a worldwide learning and innovative organization. Its key asset to manage diversity is cultural synergy. There are four steps in making cultural synergy. From our exploration, we have discovered that HP experienced all the steps to realize this synergy. Studies have likewise recognized five systems for administering cultural diversity. The most alluring one is cultural synergy achieved by valuing other culture while maintaining self-society. While dissecting companies like HP, we have discovered that it tries to look after social cooperative energy. It does this by placing distinction in the commercial center, working environment, and group. By working with individuals who have an alternate edge of reference, one can look at issues from distinctive perspective, study better approaches for taking care of issues and in this way can make cultural synergy. HP did this in its workplace (Shakhray, 2009).
Successful chiefs are cognizant that certain abilities are essential for making a solid, different workforce. First, administrators must comprehend discrimination and the expected outcomes. Second, administrators must distinguish their own particular social predispositions and biases. Differing qualities is not about contrasts in groups but the distinctions around people. Everyone is unique and does not speak or represent a given group. At last, administrators must be eager to change the company if…