In this day and age, any enterprise wishing to be successful has to embrace the concept of diversity, and employ staff accordingly. Many businesses have a policy in place regarding their encouragement of diversity in the workplace. There are several ways in which this can be successfully implemented.
Consider communication: An example of this would be if you had a staff member or members for whom English is not their native language. Ensure that any procedural material is printed in their native language, for ease of reference, and use universal signs and symbols around the workplace. Talk to them to make sure that they fully comprehend important information, such as safety rules and policies.
Treat staff as individuals: Successes and failures should be judged on an individual basis, and stereotypes should be avoided. Encourage this attitude of open-mindedness amongst staff. Do not tolerate prejudice. For example, if a staff member was overheard making racial stereotypical comments, this should be dealt with swiftly and firmly.
Encourage work tasks that involve small groups: Any tasks that can be completed as group-work should be completed by groups that are diverse. In this way, all staff can get to know one another, and develop respect for one another on a personal level, and each person’s skills and abilities can be recognized.
Be objective: Focus on the job and not the person. Have the same exacting standards for everyone. For example, don’t make excuses for poor performance based on an employee’s personal information.
Practice open-mindedness: Encourage open-mindedness by modeling it to staff. For example, let employees see you working alongside people with diverse backgrounds, and cultivate workplace friendships amongst diverse groups. Realize that everyone has something to give to the business and encourage this mentality amongst employees.
- “Five Steps for Successfully Managing Diversity”. EHS Daily Advisor. (2010) Retrieved http://ehsdailyadvisor.blr.com/2010/07/5-steps-for-successfully-managing-diversity/