David A. Thomas and Robin J. Ely's Three Paradigms of Diversity

746 Words Aug 9th, 2011 3 Pages
1. David A. Thomas and Robin J. Ely's three paradigms of diversity focuses on: (1) discrimination and fairness, (2) access and legitimacy, and (3) learning and effectiveness paradigm as shown.

"Most people assume that workplace diversity is about increasing racial, national, gender, or class representation - in other words, recruiting and retaining more people from traditionally underrepresented identity group." [1] This is true for both discrimination and fairness and access and legitimacy paradigms. Although these two paradigms are the most common way that companies approach diversity, they are not the most effective way for companies to manage diversity.

Discrimination and fairness paradigm focuses on hiring women and people of
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It is important to hear the employees opinions, acknowledge their concerns, and give them feedback. Additionally, companies gain organizational effectiveness in managing diversity when they restructure its mission, culture, and practices. This will allow them to connect diversity to the company’s goals. This style is exactly why the establishment I worked for was effective with managing diversity.

Organizational effectiveness for managing diversity was in full effect when I became employed with my former company. I have heard stories of how it was before then; the Executive Director was white, all department heads were males, people were hired to match the community, and women were mostly support staff. This all changed when a Latino male succeeded the current Executive Director.

When I started working there, diversity was never an issue. We were located in the heart of the South Bronx, but yet all walks of life worked there. Women were top managers, there was never a "known" gap in gender, age, ethnicity, or group, skills and qualifications were the determinants of hire and not how the person looked, etc. The company was more like a family type atmosphere than a working institution. The staff was involved in mostly all decision making process because our opinions mattered and they let us know that we had a voice. Our meetings were…