Overcoming Obstacles in a Diverse Workplace

1241 WordsJul 13, 20185 Pages
Diversity in the workplace is not a new idea or concept. From the late 1800’s to the early 1900’s the majority of people living in the United States were immigrants from other countries including Italy, Russia, and Ireland. Each of the members from these countries spoke different languages, came from different cultures, and had different customs and work ethics. Acceptance to them was fought for in the workplace in industries such as coal, steel, automobile manufacturing, and other labor forces. This type of struggle still continues today in the workplace from cultural differences, and language differences to racial and gender differences. This paper will examine the obstacles managers face when overcoming generational differences…show more content…
252). The major issues that are faced with differing cultures within the workplace are communication issues. Speed and efficiency is lost when total understanding of the firm’s objectives is not communicated appropriately. Different cultures communicate in different ways and it is vitally important for a leader to clearly communicate to all involved within a firm. Overcoming the Obstacles The decision to lead and the willingness to lead can be an extremely complex one. With the many issues that arise in the workplace such as diversity including gender related, generational, and cultural differences, leadership can be a very difficult challenge. Clawson in his book Level Three Leadership provides six effective ways to handle overcoming the obstacles that arise with diversity in the workplace. Clawson offers that first an effective leader must clarify his or center. He states, “Many people go through life never clarifying their center. They live and die having never tested their inner beliefs to see if and how they hold up under fire” (Clawson, p. 241). It is important for a leader to first understand what engages him or her before leading others is possible. In a diverse workplace, a leader that is centered will be able to face any challenge head on and fully accomplish the goals and tasks at hand. Second, an effective leader in a diverse workplace must be able to clarify what is
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