Saturday, November 9, 2019
The Importance of Understanding Diversity in a Business Setting
The Importance of Understanding Diversity in a Business Setting Ã¢â¬Å"Diversity is defined as real or perceived differences among people in race, ethnicity, sex, age, physical and mental ability, sexual orientation, religion, work and family status, weight and appearance, and other identity-based attributes that affect their interactions and relationships (Bell, 2012, p. 5)Ã¢â¬ . The work force of today is more diverse than ever, and the marketplace progressively more global.By 2010 the number of women in the U. S. labor force increased by almost 10 million, a growth rate almost one-third higher than that of men. The success of a workplace depends on a mangerÃ¢â¬â¢s ability to promote a work environment that is inclusive to every person, and that allows every employee to reach his or her full potential (Gaines & Wilson, 2005). Benefits of a Diverse Workforce According to Bell (2012) there is a lot to be gained from a diverse workforce.Having employeesÃ¢â¬â¢ who are from variou s backgrounds can improve the companyÃ¢â¬â¢s marketing ability by being able to develop products that meet the needs and appeal to a more diverse population. By creating a reputation that values all types of employees can lead to better customer loyalty. Research has shown that groups of people with varying backgrounds bring differences that result in greater creativity and problem-solving abilities. These groups have also displayed more cooperative behaviors on group tasks.The benefits to having a diverse work force are many. Having a work environment centered on creating a comfortable and productive atmosphere requires managementÃ¢â¬â¢s ability to understand that there are differences but that it is important to bridge these gaps and promote working together as a team. Managing a Diverse Workforce It is important as a manager to acknowledge differences, and promote diversity. Successful managers avoid using stereotypes, and generalities when communicating.Managers need to pay attention and respect peopleÃ¢â¬â¢sÃ values and beliefs. They should establish relationships with their employeesÃ¢â¬â¢, and remember that each person has different talents and strengths. They can learn what works to motivate and reward each employee. EmployeesÃ¢â¬â¢ need continued support in working to their potential by having management provide ongoing opportunities for learning and development (Gaines & Wilson, 2005). Educating and offering classes on cultural diversity is a good way for employees to learn about how to interact and work productively with a diverse workforce.Left Handed in a Right Handed World Being left handed the ball sock experiment was interesting. I found that I have adapted in a lot of ways by becoming more ambidextrous. The most challenging part of the experiment was not having the use of both hands. I could not write legibly at all with my right hand, and I found when flipping through a magazine with my right hand I preferred to flip the Ã¢â¬Å"no rmalÃ¢â¬ way front to back. When I usually flip through a magazine using my left hand I prefer flipping from the back to front.It did give me an appreciation for the challenges faced by those who do not fit into what the society sees as normal. I felt I had a disability and it was challenging to do my normal everyday tasks, plus I got some strange looks from my family. I also learned that it is possible to adapt to new situations. Being a lefty my whole life I have been viewed as different from what is considered normal. Sure I can only use extremely sharp scissors to cut paper, and I can barely use a knife to cut my food but I have never looked at this as a negative thing, I have always felt it makes me special and unique.ConclusionIn closing a diverse workforce is quickly becoming what is normal for today. We must start becoming more aware and understanding of individuals who are not exactly like us. Management must adapt to these changes by realizing that there are many positi ve benefits to having a diverse work force and treat every employee as an individual with different strengths and talents. In order to successfully work in todayÃ¢â¬â¢s business world we all must be open minded and willing to accept our differences and develop an appreciation for a more diverse population.