Introduction to Diversity in the Workplace Activities
Diversity in the workplace activities is now a boon for the organization to flourish. Instead of treating people badly or discriminately, if you pay heed to their uniqueness in culture, age, ethnicity, and values, then running an organization would be much easier. But for some employers, diversity in the workplace activities is a new concept. Even after globalization, they don’t seem to believe in inclusiveness and diversity in the workplace activities. They want people from their ethnicity and from their locality. They don’t want to expand their horizon. They don’t want to think beyond their own box. And then as they try to expand their business, they fail. The failure becomes so gradual that they don’t understand that they’re failing because there’s no immediate downfall.
Business is all about people. If you treat them as objects, naturally they will leave your organization now or in some near future. People are not things. We should love people and use things. But employers who are running huge businesses often don’t realize the value of human beings. Thus they make the mistake of using people and loving things like more profits, more benefits, better market share, and better brand value. What they fail to understand is if they treat people with love and care, they will give you back more and much more than you can ever expect.
Now you would tell us what’s to do about diversity in the workplace activities with treating people badly? We will say everything. If an organization wants to be sustainable for a long period of time, they need to invest in people. And running a few training programs and management development programs now and then will not solve the problem. You need to understand people and their varied needs. Each human resource is of different caliber and has unique personality and qualities. Thus, you need to treat them differently and at the same time with love and respect. If you can maintain an optimum quotient in diversity in the workplace activities (not more, not less; read no bias) then it would easier for you to make your organization sustainable. Your attrition rate will get reduced and your profits will sky-rocket and moreover, you and your employees would be happy at the end of the day.
In this article, we will talk about it in depth. First, we will talk about surface level diversity and deep level. Then we will talk about what’s more important in the case of diversity in the workplace activities – equality or equity? And finally, we will give you some tips to be at your best.
Let’s get started.
Types of diversity in the workplace activities
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If we want to summarize it we will be able to divide it into two types –
- Surface level
- Deep level
The name itself defines surface-level diversity in the workplace activities. People who work in your organization are combinations of varied characteristics and of different age, ethnicity, race, and culture. The differences which are visible just by looking or talking to them once or twice are called surface-level diversity in the workplace activities.
Things like age, ethnicity, religion, culture, race etc. are surface level diversity in the workplace activities.
If you can nurture your people by taking care of the surface level diversity in the workplace activities, then going deep would become easier. But without nurturing the inclusiveness at the surface level first you will not be able to go deep and look within.
Again, if you don’t judge people as per their individual differences, you would be able to see their deep level diversity in the workplace activities and would be able to look into their eyes and experience deep level diversity as well.
This is a set of values, principles, personality traits that individuals hide beneath their surface-level diversity in the workplace activities. If the surface level diversity in the workplace activities is about 10%, deep level diversity in the workplace exercises is about 90%. Thus, you can understand that deep level of diversity in the workplace exercises can take a huge role if you pay to heed.
How you deal with deep level diversity in the workplace exercises either takes your organization to an uplifted destination or breaks your company into pieces. Because first, you need to understand each individual well and then assign work as per their personality and values to get the maximum benefit. If you ask an introvert to go out and talk to a thousand people, it would be a mismatch. That doesn’t mean introverts can’t talk to people. But usually, they prefer to be quiet. The work of strategy, marketing would be right for them instead of going to the market and do direct selling. This is a hypothetical situation but this is the way you need to understand how to deal with deep level diversity in the workplace exercises.
What’s more important in dealing with diversity in the workplace activities – equity or equality?
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Dealing with diversity in the workplace activities is a difficult job. Often things go out of control and even top management can’t figure out what to do. In this section, we will tell you how to approach diversity in the workplace activities no matter what it is – surface level or deep level.
There’s one way which a lot of organizations follows and that’s equality. People say you need to treat everyone equally no matter where they belong, what they do and what they are as human beings. But if you treat everyone equally, there is a significant issue with it. The issue is everyone is not equal.
For example, if you decide to buy shoes each of your employees and you decide that you will treat them equally. Now you go out and buy 50 pairs of shoes of the same size. You come back and declare that you want to gift one pair of shoes to each of your employees. Listening to you, they become happy and come forward to check their shoes. To their surprise, they see that all shoes are of the same size. Few people whose toes are bigger than others are not able to put their toes into the shoes and people whose toes are lesser in size are not comfortable to wear the shoe. Few whose size is as similar as purchased size are extremely happy getting those shoes.
This is the problem with equality.
Now, what’s the alternative then? The alternative is equity.
By taking the same example we can show you how equity works. Suppose you decide to gift shoes to each of your employees. But this time you want to see the size of each employee first and then will order the shoe so that the shoes fit all. You declare to the employees that top management has decided to gift shoes to all the employees. They get so happy and give their size to the respective executive. The executive collects all the names and sizes and goes to the shop to order shoes for everyone, but this time with different sizes. When the ordered shoes reach the office, each employee is given their own sized shoe and they put their toes into it and gets happy. Now there’s no unhappiness around because everyone gets the same result.
Thus, now you can understand that equality doesn’t solve everything. You need to know each and every person in your organization and treat them with equity. Equality is flawed. People are diverse. Thus expect diversity in the workplace. Even if you hire people from your locality or from your own ethnicity, they will be different at the deep level. Think equity over equality and you will be able to handle diversity in the workplace better.
How to deal with diversity in the workplace in the best way possible?
First of all, there is no best way to approach diversity in the workplace. Every organization is different and the issue with diversity in every organization is not similar. So, you need to understand first that all the tips mentioned below may not be equally applicable to you or to your organization.
Let’s dive in.
Treat everyone with dignity first:
No matter how different they look like or talk like or are characterized by, there is one common thread and that’s humanity. If you understand that humane approach first and treat everyone with love, respect and dignity, the rest of things will become easier. Diversity in the workplace activities is only at the surface. Even if we talk about deep-level diversity, within us there are some common needs – the need to be appreciated, the need to be loved and the need to be understood. If you fulfill these needs of your people, your people will give you back in multiple ways.
Create synergy by using diversity in the workplace statistics:
Diversity in the workplace exercises can be used positively. You can easily create synergy out of diversity in the workplace statistics. Imagine you create a team who is completely from the different background. Now, as there is diversity, the benefits will go to the team and the output of the team. If you haven’t heard about synergy, here it is in simple terms 1+1 = 3. It means that the combined output is
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better than the sum of individual parts. If you can understand the need for synergy in the right project, then diversity will help you become more progressive.
Let them talk in between:
If you let your employees speak and gather around someplace without being you in that place. Make the environment as beautiful as they can open themselves up and talk in between. Even if their language is not similar, they can express themselves in the ways human beings connect with each other. You need to create this grapevine if you would like them to mingle with each other and to know each other better irrespective of their differences. This simple environmental shift from formal to informal will make them feel comfortable with each other and then building teams and asking them to work together would be gravy. Try this when you feel that there’s too much diversity in your workplace and see what happens.
Focus on culture:
Do your organizational culture support diversity in the workplace statistics? If not then it would be difficult to create better output. Why? Because everything in your organization flows from culture. If your culture supports diversity in the workplace statistics, then delivering it to your human resources is the easy task. So, if you want to create extraordinary sensitivity around diversity in the workplace statistics in your organization, then focus on your culture. If you do, the rest will take care of itself.
Create a framework:
If you deal with diversity in your organization without any proper structure, it would be difficult to manage it qualitatively. Rather create a framework for measurement. Create a benchmark where everyone’s behavior would be recorded and then according to their behaviors record marks. 5 would be optimum sensitivity at work, whereas 10 is the highest (excellent) and 1 would be the lowest. Anything less than 5 needs improvement. People who score less than 5 in behavior related to diversity in the workplace exercises should be given sensitivity training. This way the diversity in the workplace exercises will improve. It’s better to create some sort of structure than creating no structure.
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Diversity in the workplace statistics is not a new concept. Since globalization, it’s being discussed and the organizations have been trying to improve their diversity quotient. But now as globalization is being at a point of saturation and everything can be global in a matter of minutes, the need for diversity in the workplace statistics has been realized much more than ever before. Organizations have been conducting training programs to ensure that their workforce understands the concept of diversity in the workplace statistics and can adapt themselves to it.
Moreover, the owners who are running the organizations are going back to their drawing board and asking questions about their own sensitivity with diversity in the workplace activities. They are asking the question like – “Am I co-operative enough to a person of the different culture?” “How I am viewing them?” “How I relate to them?”
And then they are completely changing the core of the culture realizing that if the diversity in the workplace activities is not handled properly and is not put to good use then ultimately everything will fall into pieces. It’s now your turn to realize the value of diversity in the workplace activities and do something about it in your organization.
This has been a guide to maintain an optimum quotient in diversity in the workplace activities then it would easier for you to make your organization sustainable. These are the following external link related to the diversity in the workplace activities.