Having a diverse workforce is not just an act of following the principle of human right by allowing all who are deserving but also is the best thing to do for the success of an organization.
What is Work Place Diversity?
Workplace diversity is being more inclusive with people from any background, race, gender, age, ethnicity or any other human attributes. Diversity at the workplace is something with what every company feels can increase their chance of outdoing their competitors.
The Human Resource department of all the companies are always on the race to find the best people and having people from multiple backgrounds has proved to be the best way of having a good pool of people.
Although diverse workplace does not necessarily guarantee improved overall performance, it will help companies build a good organization culture and productive working environment.
Benefits of Workplace Diversity
1. New Pool of Talent
When diverse people come in and work for a single purpose, the amount of talent adds up to do a lot of wonderful things to achieve the common goal. Although the mission would be the same, people from multiple backgrounds who are uniquely good at different jobs will collaboratively help achieve the task in a much efficient manner.
Working in a team requires the need to understand the way you make yourself comfortable to work with all the members and build the team in such a way that each individual has a pivotal role to play in achieving the goal. People coming from various backgrounds who are motivated to excel in their work have the nack to solving problems and moving ahead as a team.
2. Continuous Learning and Personal Growth
People are always looking for growth and bigger opportunities because the race towards success is so lucrative and illuding that the margin for error is so small.
We no longer look for a job that demands us to be at the office doing what the boss says but are actually looking to learn and grow. A good professional career requires passion and dedication to learn new things at work every day and there is no place to learn new things than in the office which has people from a mixed background.
A Research and Development team of seven people from five different countries will always do better than a team with fifteen or twenty people from a single country.
Each one of them will think of their own way of doing their job and the synergy will bring an exponential improvement in the output. They will achieve the goal ahead of the time and probably with optimized utilization of resources.
4. Faster Problem Solving
There will be problems while working in a team and it is actually the problems that keep the team together and the work towards the common goal. Solving problems in a team makes the team bond well with each other, the cohesion increases and the efficiency of the team grows. This process of working on a problem helps the team in making quick decisions and solve the problems faster.
5. Better Individual Performance
Humans have the habit of wanting to do things in a better way than others do. When we see our colleagues doing really well in a certain job, we tend to prove ourselves that we can outperform them. We may call it jealousy or envy but that helps in improving our individual performance and that helps the team do well on the whole.
6. Increased Profit
The ultimate goal and the mission of an organization is to make a profit. If a team with a good and talented people continuously learn and grow professionally and innovate new ways to doing their task, solving the problem in an efficient way with best of their individual performances, the team is bound to help their organization make a good profit.
Challenge of Workplace Diversity
Working with a diverse group of people means you’ll be required to communicate clearly and effectively with your co-workers. This can be tricky at times because of a diverse way besides the language of communication of each of the team members.
It is not only the language people speak. With geographical diversity companies also need to deal with body language and gestures issues as well.
2. Initial Collaboration
This might not necessarily be a case on every occasion but there is a certain resistance human has to face while we collaborate and work as a team with people from a different background be it cultural, geographical, political or educational. The productivity at the initial phase might not be that encouraging to keep the working up with the pace required to finish the job.
3. Aligning to the Mission
How well people with different background come together to solve a common problem and hence achieve a common goal depends upon how well the diversity practice is laid out by the company. There are no specific guidelines to make diverse people work on a common goal. Every organization has its own culture and specific methods of doing their job.
Its the role of the strategic management team to properly guide and groom its people and align them to work on the same mission in harmony.
4. Dispute Handling
Disputes and inevitable on organizations with a diverse workforce. Things get further messy when people are from different ideologies and school of thoughts. The Asian way of handing dispute can totally be different from the European or the American.
5. Internal Resistance
Regardless of how progressive we try to become, there is always a certain group of people who inherently disagree to follow the concept of a diverse workforce. It might take some work for the leader or the higher management team to convince and educate the employees who seem to oppose the culture of a diverse workplace.