Diversity Training In The Workforce

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Diversity Training in the Workforce

Diversity Training in the Workforce


In general, diversity training has three primary objectives, though not every workshop is designed to address all three. These include increasing awareness about diversity issues, reducing biases and stereotypes that interfere with effective management and changing behaviours as required to manage a more diverse workforce effectively. The value and importance of diversity training has often been presented in the practitioner literature and popular press.

However, not all references to diversity training have been positive. For example, some authors suggest that the programs are designed to intimidate white men into accepting affirmative action policies, that they constitute brainwashing, and that they provide meaningless window dressing without bringing about real change. Other authors point out that diversity courses have been criticized as attempts to be "politically correct" and cite the concern that the merits of these programs have not been fully explored for fear of being seen as politically incorrect. Given the widespread use of diversity training, it is important to assess the extent to which such training can be an effective means of achieving the learning objectives associated with it.

Diversity Management

For Managers to respond to the challenges of working with a diverse environment they must see employees problems in handling diversity. Such difficulties include misinformation about other groups and employees resistance to change. Some employees are not motivated to understand cultural differences. It appears when some employees have to invest there time and energy in understanding cultural differences, the motivation and the willingness to know is not present. There must be some risk to explore and appreciate diversity. When we acknowledge diversity, all of us have something worthwhile to contribute.

Managers need to be excellent planners to manage diversity and achieve the organization goals. For this aspect to take place there must be the sharing of information, incentives, physical accommodation and feedback from employees. When all employees are involved in diversity programs, they will develop and improve social and working relationships in the organization. The Managers who help employees recognize the differences in them and others are those managers who are having success in managing diversity. However, this task in not an easy one and takes a lot of patience, when dealing with conflict feedback properly (McNamara, 1999, p.1).

Conflict is always present when employees of diverse cultures work together and their values and beliefs are different from those employees they work with. Conflict should never be left to resolve itself, but should be dealt with immediately. Solving conflict should never be let alone, because prevention usually makes the situation worse (Pirisi, 1999, p.1).

Managers must stress the need to incorporate training and retraining of employees, at every level. The goal is to link diversity efforts with business objectives to manage the ever changing diverse workforce. This encompasses diversity education objectives into accessible training programs. There is a clear need for diversity to be rooted into the company's training system. Therefore, diversity training will ease many fears, discrimination and increase the ...
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