We are all different which is great because we are all unique. Without diversity life would be very boring.
Diversity consists of visible and non-visible differences which will include factors such as personality, work style, sex, age, background, race and disability. There are laws against discrimination of any kind in the workplace. With modern communications, the world has become smaller and smaller making it possible for people from different cultures to seek jobs outside their countries. The result is that in any situation, a manager has under his or her supervision, men, women, disabled, white, black, Muslim, Hindu, Christian and so on. A workplace with such diversity certainly calls for a high level of managerial skills to weave the needs and aspirations of these individuals with that of the organization.
Managing diversity is founded on the premise that harnessing these differences will create a productive environment in which everybody feels valued, where their talents are being fully utilized and in which organizational goals are met. It takes individuals as the primary focus of concern, and not groups.
Managing diversity is a big test for all managers. Diversity and differences between people can, and should, if managed effectively, add value to the organization. Harnessing these differences is bound to create a productive environment in which everybody feels valued, where their talents are being fully utilized and in which organizational goals are met.
To be successful, managers must be “blind” to visible differences and treat everyone as a member of a team with collective goal. The organizational culture must be consistent with and supportive of diversity in the workplace.
It is not our differences that divide us, it is our inability to recognize, accept, and celebrate those differences.