Diversity can impact on work and work relationships Sample Assignment
You have been working as a supervisor in a community service organisation for some time. The organisation has a policy of recognising diversity – personal/individual and cultural. The current workplace is, therefore, comprised of a number of people from different cultures, with a wide range of background experiences and skills.
Inclusivity policies are supported by the current workforce and there is very little conflict. All staff receives cross-cultural training which helps them accept workforce diversity and accommodate the diverse needs of the clients for who they care.
Write a 2,500-word paper explaining:
- The ways in which diversity can impact on work and work relationships
- The benefits of diversity
- The need for inclusivity, cultural safety and cultural competence
- Wy it is necessary for staff to reflect on their own individual ad cultural characteristics, biases and prejudices
- How diversity should be valued and accommodated
- How effective and mutual beneficial relationships can be built wit work mates, clients and clients’ families
- How to overcome communication barriers
- How the individual and cultural needs of clients can be accommodated and respected
- The methods might be used to prevent, overcome or manage cultural conflicts
- Strategies that people can use to improve their own self and social awareness
Diversity refers to the mixture of different things which are separate from each other. It works as the beneficial concept for organisation as people belonging to diverse culture provide wide range of scope and option to company (Sandberg, 2015). The present report is based on the Red Cross, a renowned community services charity-based organisation which works for social welfare. This company was incorporated in 1941 by Royal Charter. Red Cross works on an international scale and contributes in different kinds of social services like aid, migration support, blood donation, social inclusion, community services and humanitarian law. The company is working collaboratively with a huge number of workforce that works with diverse cultured people. This non-governmental company follows inclusivity policies for managing conflicts at 694 workplaces. This report provides a deep description about roles of diversity and its impact upon workplace.
Impact of diversity upon work and work relationship.
Diversity plays an essential role in the working environment of a company. It also influences the capability of employees while performing their job responsibility and their relationship with colleagues. In context to Red cross, the community service company is working at international whose work is operated by people belonging to different cultures. Thus, it is difficult for a company to deal huge work without compromising with anyone's culture. It can be said that there are many ways in which diversity in employees’ culture impact upon work and work relationship of Red cross. These ways are defined as below:
- It helps in learning experiences for all the people working in organisation.
- Increases productivity and efficiency.
- Easy adaptability of changed business environment (Prause and Mujtaba, 2015).
- Collection of new and diverse ideas and experiences makes it for company to outperform its competitors.
- Numbers of services can be provided resulting in higher profits and customers satisfaction.
- Lower employee turnover but conflicts may rise due to different opinions of workforce.
- Employer may face difficulties in understanding problems of each employee.
- Difficulty in co-ordination of team work due to language barrier.
- Cultural resistance is a big challenge in which employee become redundant to change.
- Discrimination issues get higher and employees often treated unfairly.
- Training costs are increased.
Benefits of diversity.
Diversity refers to concepts which implies that everyone is unique in personality can be recognised on dimensions such as race, ethnicity, gender, sexual orientation etc (Kamoche and et. al., 2015). In organisational context, it is a wide set of conscious practices that involve understanding individual based on demographic and philosophical differences. Diversity in an entity could create benefits that are as follows:
- Improved productivity by using diverse set of skills and experiences. These can be shared with each other which work as an assistance to each other.
- High creativity by doing work with team efforts and exposing innovation. Working style differs person to person which bring creative ideas.
- Greater profits by following global trends with the use of language. It can provide a strong base to operate at global scale as interaction with different people gets easy due to language.
- Employee engagement is improved due to number of meetings with workforce, in which personnel share their personal experiences.
- It reduces employee turnover and increase talent pool. The reason being, employees look for company which hire manpower from diverse background.
- The increased equality to all employees encourages personnel from all backgrounds to feel comfortable, confident which improve their performance (Bartholomaeus, Riggs and Andrew, 2017).
Need for inclusivity, cultural safety and cultural competence.
Cultural inclusion refers to laws and policies for combing best-problem solving, creative, innovative and entrepreneurial practices. This kind of environment is created to work with mutual respect, effective relationship and many more.
Cultural safety is primarily regarded a concept to ensure safe and healthy working environments for employees. An employer should consider health of its workforce important and make necessary arrangements.
Cultural competence refers to ability to build an environment where people find it easy to interact and understand each other and to be respectful to people belonging to different backgrounds. The need for the above-mentioned elements are as follows:
- To minimise conflicts at the workplace (Noe and et. al., 2017).
- To attract more potential employees to join the company.
- To create harmony in society by treating each individual equal.
- To provide a suitable and desirable environment for people from diverse background.
- To co-ordinate work and mitigate barriers and difficulties in attainment of goals.
- To create a large pool for human resources, from where required employees can be hired as and when required.
- To create an environment where each employee is given respect.
- To reduce or remove any sort of discrimination.
- To value capabilities and abilities.
- To encourage and motivate to outperform the set standard.
Cultural characteristics, biases and prejudices.
Cultural characteristics means shared set of values by a society. A society have people from different background, who may have different opinions, ideas and choices, hence, these all should be given importance.
Bias can be described as a tendency to form decisions by considering specific thoughts or notions. This makes a person to commit mistakes or errors in judgements so formed.
Prejudices refers to incorrect behaviour towards an individual or group of people. It is a dislike without any reason towards a particular group.
It is necessary and important for individuals to be self-aware and competent to perform their tasks efficiently (Smith, 2015). One must stand and raise his voice against any circumstances which may impact negatively. Everyone should provide the best solution to their clients or customers. When it comes to biases, which is a human nature, in which a person can make mistakes, however, employees must take utmost care and carry work to mitigate the level mistakes and errors that may occur.
How diversity should be valued and accommodated.
The individual perception and experience may affect the performance of an organisation in different ways. It may impact its assets and growth. As increasingly more companies are expanding their businesses in multiple countries which increases diverse workforce in the organisation (Zastrow, 2016). Hence, it is important to evaluate value of diversity. Valuing diversity mean creating equal employment opportunities to all irrespective of gender, nationality, race, religion etc. Accommodating diversity mean modification of policies, practices, attitudes and behaviours that may discriminate a group of person or even an individual on the number of basis.
It can be valued and accommodated in the following ways:
- Inclusion: An organization must make it a part of its strategic goals to hire workforce from diverse background.
- Create a work environment: In this, employer must make sure and work towards making an environment that is free from any bias, harassment. Each employee is given equal respect.
- Effective culture of communication: Communication mechanism should be implemented effectively in which one must listen to others problem and consider their opinions by giving values and providing solution on a fair basis.
- Equal opportunities: Each employee should be given equal opportunities irrespective their background. Further, there should not be any barrier to explore such opportunities.
- Appreciation of contributions: Each employee must be encouraged to bring their own perception and ideas (Conrad and Gasman, 2015). Further, each personnel shall be rewarded and appreciated for their contribution.
How effective and mutually beneficial relationships can be built with work mates, clients and client's families.
Creating relationship at workplace is very important as employees spend majority of their time with their colleagues. Further, a healthy and good relationship increases efficiency of employees which provide positive impact on business. Moreover, workforce find it comfortable to work in an entity which create an amicable environment. The ways in which effective and mutually beneficial relationship with workmates, clients and client's families are as follows:
- Encouraging employees to give suggestions and opinions about various activities and operations of organization which will provide a sense of belongingness to employees.
- Understanding and valuing personal problems of a personnel and provide appropriate solution which will solve it (Jones and et. al., 2016). Further, sympathy can must be shown.
- An effective flow of information by keeping them transparent. Moreover, not a single information or data should be hidden and must be accessed by all employees.
- Encouraging everyone working in the organization to create a positive and supportive work culture. This can be achieved by forming a synchronization with each other in team and overall.
- Informal environment often helps in building a contact with employees so that mutual and friendly relationship can be created with clients and their families.
How to overcome communication barrier.
Communication is a key to success of an organisation. A message sent by sender must be such that it is understandable by receiver. However, an organisation employing diverse workforce may face various language barriers. Red Cross can remove communication barriers in the following ways:
- Elimination differences in opinions: A company must hire right person for the right job, who has required skills and capabilities. Further, he must be able to understand the language spoken by majority of people working in organization.
- Use of simple language: An easy language with clear words and simple meaning must be used and words giving uncertain and ambiguous meaning must be avoided) (Wen and et. al., 2015).
- Active listening: One must listen to other attentively. Listening helps in apprehending the message in the same sense as of sender. One must ask questions when the other person has finished his part.
- Simple organizational structure: The structure should be simple which is easy to understand by each individual working in the organization. The simple the structure, the effective the communication.
- Avoid information overload: The work must be assigned according to skills and capabilities of each employee. Further, leader must provide guidance which will make sub-ordinates to work within prescribed time.
How the individual and cultural needs of clients can be accommodated and respected.
The cultural needs of individual from diverse background should be respected. This gives a confidence in public and investors in the company (Bell and Adams, 2016). The ways in which individual and cultural needs of clients can be accommodated and respected are as follows:
- Awareness about cultural background, experience, attitudes, values of individual. It is important to form an understanding and correct biases must be formed that will benefit for long-term.
- Education oneself is important to increase knowledge about differences of culture, social, psychological, political etc.
- Recognition to ethnicity and culture of client's have positive impact on their behaviour and perception.
- Respect must be given to client's beliefs and values along with spiritual and religious values.
- Information and messages should be provided in a language fathomable by receiver i.e. client. It reduces any misconception and wrong intention.
- Whatever information is to be transmitted, it must be in writing together with enough supplements and explanations.
- Elimination of prejudices and practices that may cause discrimination in workplace.
- Clients must be assisted to aware about their own norms of culture which are applicable generally as well as in organisation (Ellis and Epstein, 2015).
Methods used to prevent, overcome or manage cultural conflicts.
Disputes are inevitable, and it is just impossible to remove them from arising again in future. When an organisation employs a diverse workforce, it is likely to cause conflicts. Further, these must be resolved promptly in order to maintain consistency in organisational activities. The techniques that may used to manage or overcome them are as follows:
- One should not have assumption that disputes involve people of different cultures.
- A through explanation about the process which would be used to resolve dispute must be made (van der Walt and de Klerk, 2015). Further, it must be made in a language that is intelligible by everyone.
- A draft must be prepared about the steps which will be taken and translated into language of all parties.
- Interpreters must be provided to make it feasible to understand.
- Respect must be given to each employee's point of view and opinions.
- The various culture at work place must be highlighted and fast understanding of cultural events must be made.
- Proper investigation must be made by using body language, emotions and problem-solving techniques.
Strategies for improving self and social awareness.
- One must Learn about behaviours other people that may cause impact negatively. Further, modification must be done to behaviour according to situation to have positive experience and impact.
- Take ownership and apologise for rude and bad behaviour and errors and mistakes made.
- Ask peers for feedback about the of former interaction. One must be able to accept the constructive feedback both negative and positive (without getting defensive) and alter accordingly.
- Recognise your body language. Non-verbal communication plays a more important than what is actually said. If the body language used is positive, it will benefit the interactions with other colleagues and clients (Thyer, 2017).
- Interacting Learning to listen with a genuine interest, and fighting the instinct to reply immediately instead really listen to what is trying to be communicated by the other person.
- Agree that improving one’s social skills will not happen overnight. Instead try small steps rather than trying to improve or alter several things at once. Too many might be unhelpful as you will feel so inundated that you may feel an emotionally trapped.
- Increase your positive personality skills and use them to your benefit when with working with others.
From the above report, it has been concluded that work and work relationship is important to maintain a healthy and amicable working environment at workplace. Diversity is always having positive impact at workplace and employees with different background must be hired in companies. This increases productivity, profitability and efficiency. Further, conflicts must be avoided through methods that may provide appropriate way to resolve. Moreover, social awareness is important in global market so that company can do its business easily in multiple countries. Along with this, the power of language must be understood.
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