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The Increasing Diversity of the Workforce and the Environment

Diversity refers to human characteristics that make people different from one another Dissimilarities/differences among people in age, gender, race, ethnicity, religion, sexual orientation, socioeconomic background, and capabilities/disabilities

In India, the main diversity sources/categories are:

1. 2. 3. 4. 5. Gender Religion Place of birth Race Caste specifically, whether individuals belong to one of the traditionally dominant "Forward Castes," one of the traditionally excluded "Scheduled Castes" or "Scheduled Tribes," or the large "Other Backward Castes" grouping. 6. Age 7. Nationality 8. People with disabilities

Diversity Concerns / Why Manage Diversity?

1. Management of Diversity refers to a set of activities involved in integrating non traditional employees into the workforce & using their diversity to firms competitive advantage 2. The ethical imperative for Equal Opportunity 3. Effectively managing diversity can improve organizational effectiveness, productivity, team work 4. Helps in securing loyalty of the best employees 5. There is substantial evidence that diverse individuals continue to experience unfair treatment 6. Its absence results in overt or subtle discrimination 7. E.g. Ford motor company & Avons global workforce

Glass ceiling alludes to the invisible barriers that prevents minorities and women from being promoted to top corporate positions Preferential Hiring: Employment programs required by federal statutes and regulations designed to remedy discriminatory practices in hiring minority group members; i.e., positive steps designed to eliminate existing and continuing discrimination, to remedy lingering effects of past discrimination, and to create systems and procedures to prevent future discrimination; commonly based on population percentages of minority groups in a particular area. Factors considered are race, color, sex, creed, and age. Affirmative Action refers to policies that take factors including "race, colour, religion, sex or national origin" into consideration in order to benefit an underrepresented group, usually as a means to counter the effects of a history of discrimination. The focus of such policies ranges from employment and education to public contracting and health programs.

Workforce Diversity: Gender

U.S. workforce is 46% percent female Women hold only 16% of corporate officer positions India accounts for the worlds largest share of working women, only 15% of which are well educated Male dominated corporate culture
Exclusionary networks: Old Boys Network

Workforce Diversity: Capabilities and Disabilities

Social acceptance of disable people is very low. Following points need to be noted: 1. A clear policy which specifies arrangements that the organisation is willing to make for disabled employees 2. Providing reasonable accommodations for individuals with disabilities 3. Promoting a non discriminatory workplace environment 4. Educating the organization about disabilities and AIDS

Workforce Diversity: Religion

Accommodation for Religious Beliefs
1. Scheduling of critical meetings 2. Providing flexible time off for holy days 3. Posting holy days for different religions on the company calendar 4. Inculcating a feeling of mutual respect for others religion 5. Cross cultural training


Workforce Diversity: Age

1. Older workers are considered as less motivated, resistant to change & dead wood. 2. Research proves otherwise 3. Generation gap makes things difficult between old & young workers

What refers to a combination of social class and income-related factors? A. Sociological background B. Socioeconomic background C. Economic diversity D. Social class


Workforce Diversity: Socioeconomic Background

Socioeconomic background refers to a combination of social class and incomerelated factors Socioeconomic diversity requires that managers be sensitive and responsive to the needs and concerns of individuals who might not be as well off as others


Critical Managerial Roles

1.Managers have more influence than other employees 2.When managers commit to diversity, it legitimizes diversity efforts of others 3.Top-management commitment and rewards for the support of diversity are critical ingredients for the success of diversity management initiatives

Critical Managerial Roles

4.Effective management of diversity hinges on two factors
Minorities start out at a slight disadvantage due to the ways in which they are perceived by others in the organization Research suggests slight differences in treatment can cumulate and result in major disparities over time


The Ethical Imperative to Manage Diversity Effectively

5.Distributive Justice
A moral principle calling for the distribution of pay raises, promotions, job titles, interesting job assignments, office space, and other organizational resources to be based on meaningful contribution that individuals have made and not personal characteristics over which they have no control.


The Ethical Imperative to Manage Diversity Effectively

6.Procedural Justice
A moral principle calling for the use of fair procedures to determine how to distribute outcomes to organizational members.


Procedural Justice
Exists when managers: 1) carefully appraise a subordinates performance 2) take into account any environmental obstacles to high performance 3) ignore irrelevant personal characteristics


Critical Managerial Roles

Insert Table 5.2


Managing Diversity Effectively Makes Good Business Sense

What a Diversity of Employees Provides
1. A variety of points of view and approaches to problems and opportunities can improve managerial decision making and problem solving. 2. Diverse employees can provide a wider range of creative ideas. 3. Diverse employees are more attuned to the needs of diverse customers. 4. Diversity can increase the retention of valued organizational members. 5. Diversity is expected/required by other firms


What is the process through which people interpret what they see, hear, and touch? A. Perception B. Imperception C. Intuition D. Selective listening


The process through which people select, organize, and interpret what they see, hear, touch, smell, and taste to give meaning and order to the world around them.


When perceptions are inaccurate managers are likely to make bad decisions and take inappropriate actions


Bad decisions include: 1) not hiring qualified people 2) failing to promote top-performing subordinates 3) promoting poorly performing managers because they have the same diversity profile


Factors that Influence Managerial Perception

An abstract knowledge structure stored in memory that allows people to organize and interpret information about a person, event, or situation Preconceived beliefs or ideas about the nature of men and women, their traits, attitudes, behaviors, and preferences

Gender Schema

Perception as a Determinant of Unfair Treatment

Simplistic and often inaccurate beliefs about the typical characteristics of particular groups of people

The systematic tendency to use information about others in ways that result in inaccurate perceptions

Similar-to-me effect perceive others who are similar to ourselves more positively than we perceive people who are different Social status effect perceive individuals with high social status more positively than those with low social status Salience effect focus attention on individuals who are conspicuously different


Overt Discrimination
Knowingly and willingly denying diverse individuals access to opportunities and outcomes in an organization Unethical and illegal Violation of the principles of distributive and procedural justice Subjects firm to lawsuits


Diversity Awareness Programs

Provide members with accurate information about diversity Uncover personal biases and stereotypes Assess personal beliefs, attitudes, and values and learning about other points of view Develop an atmosphere in which people feel free to share their differing perspectives Improve understanding of others who are different


Scope / Definition

Basically gender, race, religion, PoB, caste

gender, race, nationality religion, disability, age, marital status, immigration, armed forces veteran status and sexual orientation Relatively older

Demographic differences Legal framework

Youngest nation


Robust & aggressive

Preferential hiring



Affirmative action

Yes, but not as strong as in USA


Challenges In Managing Employee Diversity

1. 2. 3. 4. 5. 6. 7. 8. Genuinely valuing employee diversity Balancing individual & group needs Resistance to change & resentment Group cohesiveness Segmented communication networks Open communication Retaining valued performers Managing competition for opportunities

Tips for Managing Diversity

1. Diversity Training Programs / Cross Cultural Training 2. Mentoring 3. Support groups 4. Accommodation of family needs 5. Alternative work patterns 6. Apprenticeship 7. diversity audits 8. Avoid white male bashing 9. Think before promoting stereotypes

For Discussion
To what extent should employer be responsible for providing day care to children of employees? Doug Dokolosky, s former IBM executive who specializes in coaching women says that to reach the top requires sacrifice & long hours. If that is your ambition forget balancing work & family. comment