Unit 1: Business Culture and Responsibilities
Learning Outcome: 02
Task 2.1 Explain what is meant by ‘diversity in the business context
Workplace diversity means creating an inclusive environment that accepts each individual’s differences, embraces their strengths, and provides opportunities for all staff to achieve their full potential (ADCQ, 2017). Valuing differences allows each person to contribute their unique experiences to the workplace and can impact positively not only internal activities and relationships but the experiences of customers and other stakeholders as well.
With the ever-changing business environment, business owners are adopting diversity policies and strategies that appeal to their employees, clients, vendors, and suppliers (Brookins, 2018). Diversity in the workplace brings with it a host of potential benefits, as well as potential conflicts for business owners to manage.
Diversity has to do with more than race or ethnicity. Diverse workplaces are composed of employees with varying characteristics including, but not limited to, religious and political beliefs, gender, ethnicity, education, socioeconomic background, sexual orientation, and geographic location.
Businesses find ways to incorporate diversity into their workplaces without causing major changes to the way their companies operate (Brookins, 2018). Incorporating diversity practices in a workplace can include recruiting from diverse talent pools to make the company open to employees from various backgrounds. Diversity may be infused into advertising practices to ensure products and services are targeted to all consumers who represent the target market, whether through print, online, television, or radio.
As workplaces embrace the idea of diversity, they often realize benefits that help improve their companies, from new ideas to increased international opportunities. Diversity can add varied ideas and perspectives to the workplace (Brookins, 2018). Businesses compile these varied opinions and ideas as they make decisions about how to start, run, and finance their operations and market their products or services.
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Companies that set out to recruit a diverse workforce, rather than settling for a homogeneous environment, open their businesses to a larger pool of applicants. While diverse workforces aren’t limited to employees from different countries who speak more than one language or have varying ethnic backgrounds, employees with these characteristics are beneficial to companies looking to expand or improve existing operations in national, regional, or local markets (Brookins, 2018). The belief is that expansion will drive profits for companies, though Sullivan cautions that profitability as a result of a diverse workplace depends on location and target market.
Task 2.2 Recognise the benefits of having a diverse workforce
Employers are becoming more aware of the potential benefits of diversity and inclusion in the workplace (Giva, 2015). These benefits can include, for example, improvements in financial performance, operational effectiveness, workplace environment, customer perceptions, and employee loyalty and pride.
Diversity refers to race, gender, ethnic group, age, personality, cognitive style, physical and mental abilities, sexual orientation, education, and background. It is both the law and good business practice for organizations to develop systems and practices that ensure the fair treatment of all members of their workforce (Give, 2015).
Workforce diversity entails that people from a mixture of cultures, ages, backgrounds, and races are working together. In recent studies, workforce diversity has been found to be valuable for public organizations and private firms. According to the IOSR Journal of Business and Management, these five factors are common benefits of workforce diversity:
- High level of productivity
Employees who speak different languages or come from overseas have unique skills and experiences. Employees from different backgrounds can introduce new solutions and perspectives that were previously unknown (Giva, 2015). When working with a diverse team, however, it is important to prioritize the employees’ welfare through proper compensation and health care. This ensures that employees feel confident about the company, regardless of their backgrounds.
- Exchange of varieties, ideas, and teamwork
Each member of the team contributes different ideas and a unique problem-solving perspective. By having multiple minds at the table, company employees can solve problems more quickly and efficiently (Giva, 2015).
- Learning and growth
Being exposed to new cultures, ideas, and perspectives can potentially change the way employees think, collaborate with one another, and even affect one’s sense of empathy. To be successful, a company should strive to appeal to multiple populations and environments (Giva, 2015). This cultural exposure allows for a wide-ranging clientele and a better opportunity for the company to be successful……….