Explore BrainMass

The Importance of Diversity in the Workplace

24 Pages | 5,051 Words
Beth Bertelsen, MBA (#108863)

This eBook describes diversity in the context of talent management and describes how a diverse workforce is beneficial for an organization. Diversity in an organization includes such benefits as increased creativity for innovations and problem-solving, better flexibility and response to changing environments. Greater diversity also impacts information and knowledge within the company, and has specific benefits in the marketing and sales realm. The book also considers the challenges of managing diversity in the workplace including issues of discrimination and tolerance and the need for appropriate management and training.

This eBook is ideal for recruitment professionals, hiring managers, human resource professionals, and others who are involved with talent management.

An Introduction to The Importance of Diversity in the Workplace

How would you describe your coworkers? If you re living and working in a small town, far from a big city, your coworkers may be fairly similar with regard to how they look, how they generally act, their religion and upbringing. But, if you live in a cosmopolitan area where many people with differing cultures, beliefs, and practicesfrom other cultures and nations live and work together, you are probably already familiar with diversity. Today, there is a mixing of peoples like never before in history. Not only have people moved from their homelands in search of greater opportunity, with today s virtual workplaces, people don t even have to physically move to interact with others who have values and experiences very different from their own.

Throughout history, humans have demonstrated a preference for working and living with others who are like them: men with other men, a given culture with that same culture, people of one religion with that same religion, and so on. It can seem We seem to feel better and it seems to feel easier to work with people who have our same beliefs and thought patterns, language and customs. We tend to gather with those who are like us for lunch and coffee breaks. However, just like farmers know that growing the same crop year after year on the same plot of land depletes the resources that crop needs, homogeneity or like with like is not always a positive environment in the workplace. In contrast, heterogeneity, or emphasizing differences is a more positive situation for organizational growth and prosperity.

Most countries have legislation regarding inclusion and non-discrimination that states that people with certain characteristics cannot be discriminated against and that they must have an equal opportunity for a particular position in a company. In addition to laws that help guide recruitment and hiring, many people also feel there is a moral obligation to hire people without prejudice if they fit a given job description.

Diversity can be a very positive force for an organization, and this book will describe the benefits, challenges, and reasons why in today s world a diverse workforce is a necessity in today s world.

About the Author

Beth Bertelsen, MBA

Active since Apr 2011

Beth Bertelsen, MBA, has over twenty years of experience in management within small-to-mid sized organizations, both in the United States and internationally, and specializes in communication. She holds an MBA from the Universidad Latinoamericana de Ciencia y Tecnologa in Costa Rica, a Master's degree from Indiana University, and a Bachelor's degree from the University of Michigan. She has been teaching for the last 10 years, and came to BrainMass seeking to share her knowledge on a variety of topics, as well as contribute to their growing library of information. Fully bilingual, she consults with businesses and other organizations regarding training and development, document translation, and cultural awareness.

Beth's BrainMass Profile