Workplace diversity is the differences between people that encompass race, gender, ethnic group, age, personality, cognitive style, tenure, organizational function, education, background and other characteristics. Diversity at workplace has increased significantly in organizations over the years. An organization’s success and competitiveness depends upon its ability to embrace diversity. It is very important for organizations to support diversity at workplace. Diversity is more than any one gender, race, or ethnicity. It is a representative of all people, backgrounds and perspectives. It is the entire human experience. Having a diverse workforce will enable an organization to identify how people are diverse, understand the challenges and opportunities of workplace diversity and help avoid discrimination. The diversity of our people is part of what makes an organization exceptional. Organizations recognize that each person has unique strengths and reach their full potential by embracing those strengths and deliver high performance together.
Many organizations believe that diversity is good for carrying out a business successfully. A more diverse workforce will increase organizational effectiveness. It will lift morale, bring greater access to new segments of the marketplace and enhance productivity. Diversity does not only involve how people perceive themselves, but also how they perceive others. These perceptions affect their interactions. Human resource professionals need to deal effectively with issues such as communication, adaptability and change for a wide assortment of employees to function effectively as an organization. Successful organizations recognize the need for immediate action and are ready and willing to spend resources on managing diversity in the workplace now. Successful organizations are those which recognize the need for a diverse workforce and are willing to spend resources on managing diversity in the workplace.
Benefits of Workplace Diversity
Multiple benefits can be realized when organizations actively embrace diversity. Below mentioned are some of the benefits seen by organizations at large:
- Adaptibility: A workforce with diverse backgrounds brings people with multiple talents and experiences who are flexible in adapting to fluctuating markets and customer demands.
- Variety of viewpoints: A diverse workforce that feels comfortable communicating varying points of view provides a larger pool of ideas and experiences. The organization can draw from that pool to meet business strategy needs and the needs of customers more effectively.
- More effective execution: Companies that encourage diversity in the workplace inspire all of their employees to perform to their highest ability. Company-wide strategies can then be executed; resulting in higher productivity, profit, and return on investment.
Trends In Organizations To Promote Workplace Diversity
- Training workforce on cultural sensitivity and diversity: Cultural sensitivity training educates employees about cultural differences so that they can understand and appreciate each other. Its purpose is to teach employees about the do’s and don’ts of different cultures, how to properly act and communicate in a corporate environment and creating a positive organizational culture. Employees will learn globally accepted corporate etiquettes and improvement of inter- personal communication skills
- Increase in recruitment of females in the workforce: Equal opportunity has been given to women in many jobs over the years. Women employees have grown dramatically and formed a major part of the workforce. Organizations have found that women have come up with unique ideas and contributed a major share in organizational success.
- Hiring of people with disabilities and accepting different abilities: Organizations are beginning to realize the importance of including disabled workers as a vital part of the workforce. The advent of new technology has allowed organizations to recruit and utilize the services of disabled workers for their unique talents.