The article, “Challenges of Leading a Diverse Workforce,” by Janice R.W. Joplin and Catherine Daus, discusses research that suggests six challenging factors when promoting diversity in an organization, along with proposed solutions to those challenges. The six challenges include, the Change of Power Dynamics, Diversity of Opinions, Perceived Lack of Empathy, Tokenism, real and perceived, Participation, and Inertia (Joplin, Daus 1997). The challenges and solutions are discussed in relation to a continuum that consists of stages of intolerance, tolerance, and appreciation for diversity in the workplace. Each challenge is met with a solution involving required skills and attributes of a leader.
Organizations who make a commitment to diversity can see a significant impact on business in many ways. Diversity “requires a significant commitment for change to occur” (Delong, 2007, p.9). It is extremely important that leaders understand the commitment and embrace it in order for a positive impact to occur. Employers with diverse cultures and leaders can build positive and successful relationships with customers, suppliers and vendors. They can better attract and retain top talent. All of these equal more financial gain for the company.
The first thing to acknowledge about diversity is that it can be difficult. In the U.S., where the dialogue of inclusion is relatively advanced, even the mention of the word “diversity” can lead to anxiety and conflict. Supreme Court justices disagree on the virtues of diversity and the means for achieving it. Corporations spend billions of dollars to attract and manage diversity both internally and externally, yet they still face discrimination lawsuits, and the leadership ranks of the business world remain predominantly white and male.
Why is executive-level support important and what are 3 key ways to gaining leadership commitment to multi-cultural diversity?
Diversity leadership has been defined as "ways in which people and groups relate to one another and how management [leadership] decisions are made in the midst of the differences, similarities, and tensions among groups." (Lim, Cho, & Curry, 2008) And in order to accomplish this, a good leader must know the difference between the assimilation and inclusion. Assimilation takes a diverse group and homogenizes them, while inclusion maintains the individual differences between people and capitalizes on those differences for the benefit of all. For instance, instilling a goal-oriented sense of identity allows for each individual to maintain their uniqueness, while coming together to accomplish the goal. It is the goal that each individual concentrates on, not the differences between the members of the group. Also, a good leader will facilitate good
One of the objectives that the team discussed was diversity in the workplace. Major corporations have encountered issues concerning diversity in the work place. Our team can directly relate to this subject in the workplace since all of us are diverse minorities in our individual work place. It was discussed in the group that diversity in the workplace is the manager’s responsibility to insure that the workplace is a diverse environment. Managers in most companies are required to hire a diverse staff. Managers have the ability to use race, religion, and tenure as qualities to inspire success and
Today’s management in the workforce is composed of all types of people verses thirty years ago when white males held a majority of upper-management positions in companies. These positions are now held by a mixture of ethnic back grounds and women who hold just as many if not more management positions then men. Just by looking at the changes in management demographics shows how important it is for people to understand cultural competency in the workplace. Dr. Roosevelt Thomas Jr. (1999) stated, “Diversity is the collective mixture of whomever we have in our workforce characterized by their differences and similarities” (p.11). Managers and supervisors must understand the characteristics of a diversity mature individual; they also need to be
In order to investigate that what will it take for organizations to reap the real and full benefits of a diverse workforce, a research effort taken by the article author’s team. In order to understand three management challenges for Diversity, it conducted its research over a period of six years. The challenges undertaken were:
Diversity is what makes people different, not just culturally but in human differences. Having a multitude of differences in the workforce gives an organization the ability to use many ideas to reach a common goal. A person could say that a diverse group of people together in one room can accomplish greater achievements than a room filled with the same types of individuals. Managers understand the concept of diversity, and how important diversity is to the success of a company’s ability to implement programs that continue to develop a harmonious and diverse workplace. The recognition that diversity is a reality in the workforce has generated an enormous amount of activity over the years among leaders in business, government, and civil
According to the dictionary site, culture is define as” the total of inherited ideas, beliefs, values, and knowledge, which constitute the shared bases of social action”. Some examples of culture ideas are norms, values and religion is largely depending on their cultural context. Non-material culture is an intangible, e.g., beliefs, customs, philosophy, language, and government. Material cultural consists of physical objects, such as houses, food, factories, raw material, and machines. No matter what culture is belong to, it is an interaction between the material and non-material culture. However, I believe that every cultural object gives a concise meaning to an object. For example, a ring is just an artifact for women and men to wear, but in a society where wedding rings are exchanged between couple, it will be values differently.
Inclusive leadership is the practice of leadership that carefully includes the contributions of all stakeholders in the community or organization. The way a leadership mind is structured depend on how he structures his organization. An individual mindset might over shadow their ability to effectively overturn certain decision or behaviors. A leader’s values and characteristics strengthen the organization cultural diversity. Modern leaders use different styles and skills to shape human intuition. Their instinct reflect their ability to understand other’s cognitive ability. As a consultant in a global multicultural company, it will be very challenging to effectively lead an organization without implementing a strategic plan that promote respect, trust, loyal, and integrity. Prewitt, Weil, & McClure (2011) note, “Leadership involves creating a vision of the organizational future, devising a strategy for achieving that vision, and communicating that vision to all members of the organization” (p. 13). Depending on the structure of the organization, the leader’s mindset can and will change to adopt to the cultural diversity of the organization. Leadership, unlike management, is not dependent on position, title or privilege; instead it is an observable, understandable, and learnable set of skills that can be mastered by anyone that is willing to take the time and put forth the effort to learn them (Yukl, 1998). While implementing different strategies to improve the organizational
The general line of reasoning is that if we learn to incorporate each other’s diverse traits and characteristics in the workplace, we can then use these differences to foster an innovative environment, which will give the company a competitive advantage over the competitors that do not accept workforce diversity. According to the Allied Academies International Conference, “Diversity is rapidly becoming a common practice among companies due to the increasing number of minorities entering the job market today. As these groups become more prevalent throughout companies, upper-level employees are facing numerous challenges when determining what changes must take place to create a positive working environment for everyone. Management is responsible for the development and implementation of effective policies directly relating to diversity to ensure the acceptance of minorities into the workplace and to aid in minorities’ success through equal opportunities and treatment.” (Marcia L. James, 2001, Academy for Studies in International Business Proceedings)
In today’s society there are many culturally diverse people in the workforce. Most organizations can no longer make the assumption that every employee has similar beliefs or expectations. When entering into the global marketplace, people are considered one of the most valuable resources to an organization’s success. A well-managed culturally diverse workforce has the potential to thrive if managed correctly; or if mismanaged, there can be devastating negative attributes. With great expectations, culturally diverse employees can foster positive outcomes in the workplace. A company’s acknowledgement to embrace diversity and change, and implement the value of management techniques are
Organizations have been becoming increasingly diverse in terms of gender, race, ethnicity, and nationality. This diversity brings substantial potential benefits such as better decision making, greater creativity and innovation, and more successful marketing to different types of customers. But, increasing cultural differences within a workforce also bring potential costs in higher turnovers, interpersonal conflicts, and communicational breakdowns. The utilities of diversity training and the essential managerial skills required for effectively managing diversity will also be discussed.