The term diversity means being composed different and distinct elements. Regarding workplace diversity means having employees of different gender, race, religion and sex. In the recent past most corporations does not have a broader view about diversity but now the range of things considered regarding diversity has been increased. Today most employers think diversity as a reality. They don’t consider it a burden but a potential strength of their organization.
The most important factor which have contributed the increase of diversity and its side affects in the United States is the increasing number of immigrants in the country in the past few decades. This has allowed a large variety of people to enter in the workforce who are quite different in their norms, values and religions. Some of the most prominent barriers, which occur in a diverse workplace, are the language barriers. Now most of the institutions teaching customer services and relation programs have included diversity in their curriculum, which is a result of increasing awareness of the employers in the corporate sector.
The increasing diversity in the demography of the country has led the corporation to take decisive measures to attract these potential and culturally diversified customers. Moreover in order to deal the diversity in the workplace many employers devised special programs not only for the minorities but also for the majority elements of the workplace in order to become accustomed to a diversified environment. This helps them to become capable of understanding the feelings of people entirely different from themselves.
Some of the most prominent offenses, which occur in a harassment and discrimination, based of prejudgment, stereotype and gender. Increasing awareness of discrimination base on race or gender has led to the formation of Equal Employment Opportunity Commission. The commission has recognized verbal or physical conducts which show disparages, hatred or hostility towards any coworker as illegal. Slurs, epithets, negative stereotyping and threatening acts are the examples of harassment. Harassment is not limited to sexual harassment and may have several forms.
The most important thing for a workplace is that its workers are assimilated in the mainstream and do not feel isolated or cornered. The prejudice is also an important factor, which creates problems in a diversified workplace. Most prejudgments have their roots in the environment in which an individual has been brought up through out his/her life like family, school and neighborhood etc. Likewise stereotyping is also based on widely accepted ideas about a certain group and is difficult to get rid of.
People with Stereotypes mostly overlook that every individual is a different person. Another important factor in of prejudgments is the tension caused by the struggle between different groups to gain economic prosperity. While in order to achieve some short term gains some employers also foster prejudice and discrimination. Racial prejudice is due to lack of mutual understanding between different ethnic and cultural groups of their norms and customs. Gender discrimination was also once common regarding promotions and salary but not the situation is changing rapidly.
A large number of minority groups, gays and lesbians have entered the workforce and thus have changed increased the already diverse workplace in the United States. The purpose of this article is to indicate that diversity and its consequences has become a major concern of the employers in the United States and there have been some important measures taken to make this phenomenon a potential strength not a burden. The paper focuses on the phenomenon of diversity and the increasing awareness of it.
It also explains certain type of consequences, which normally occur in a diverse workplace. The article also explains that now most of these obstacles in making an integrated diversified workplace are taken care of and they are the number of their occurrences is minimizing steadily in the United States.
Patrick Highland “Diversity in the Workplace”. Encyclopedia of Business, 2nd ed.. (1999). FindArticles. com. 10 Feb. 2008. http://findarticles. com/p/articles/ mi_gx5209/is_1999/ai_n19125679