The United Nations General Assembly has declared the new millennia and this century to be the century where diversity should be celebrated. As in many other fields of life, even in business diversity has become part of its routine. Globalization along with the triumph of free trade and capitalistic view of the economy has led to a huge mobility among the labor forces from all around the world. Today, the norm we find on the market is that many international companies and corporations do employ staff from very different backgrounds. This situation has come as a result of both internal and external factors. The internal pressure can be exposed in the form of more ‘universal human rights’ appliances and the fight against discrimination and any form of prejudice. For this reason many companies were keen to declare in their ethical norms and mission statements that they not only accept these values but also will actively seek to pursue them for the benefit of the community. Such a case is that of the Boston Consulting Group, a case which we will discuss later on this paper.
The other factors influencing on this situation are what in the scholarly language is called ‘external factors’. These relate to the globalizing events that began after the Second World War and accelerated after the fall of the Berlin Wall and the end of the ‘Cold War’. During this time, since they have been ‘stretching’ to every corner of the world they use staff members from local communities in their branches but not only.
They also employ people from different background in their headquarters in order to develop the adequate policies and projects for the company to succeed in this ever more globalized market.
Here we come to the central thesis of this paper. It is that diversity in the workplace, if properly managed, can turn to a driving force for innovation and company’s successes. We will try to prove this thesis in the pages to come by setting up the theoretical framework and then by describing two concrete examples as support argumentation for this thesis.
Diversity in the workplace as a strength factor
This part aims to demonstrate that diversity in the workplace, in a company or a business firm, is in fact s source of strength and not of weakness. Companies could use this diversity within them to ‘spark’ the necessary fire for innovation and intrinsic motivation. We will discuss in this part how this can be done and what can be achieved through this method of using diversity as a strong factor.
Diversity ethics of management
Having to manage a group of people is not that easy. You have to deal with different mentalities, backgrounds and potentials. A manager should be able to coordinate the group in order to achieve the desired results on the target goals a company has. A supervisor managing a group of workers should be aware of the potentials of his workers and their personalities in order to be able to ‘get the most out of them’. This part aims to demonstrate to the reader the ethics and intelligence a manager should have in managing a diverse set of people working in his company in order to benefit both them and the company. We will discuss the cases of Sanyo Incorporated in the United States and that of the Boston Consulting Group. These two companies made their policy, not only to accept, but also to manage them in such a way that to ‘get the most out of them’. We will see the results these two companies achieved by making diversity ethical management their policy.
In the conclusion part we will return again to our thesis that diversity in the workplace, if properly managed, can turn to a driving force for innovation and company’s successes. We will conclude by reassessing the example of the two companies mentioned above and stating that diversity is in fat a strength factor that companies should be aware of (Ghosh, 2005).
Ghosh, G. (November 11, 2005) Guatam Ghosh on human resources: points of view regarding organizations, work and people. Web.
The Boston Consulting Group. (September 2009). People management & human resource competencies [online]. Web.
Gomez-Mejia, R. David, B. Robert, L. (2008) Management: People, Performance, Change, 3rd edition. New York: McGraw-Hill.
Jones, R. G. (2004). Organizational Theory, Design, and Change: Text and Cases, Fourth Edition. Prentice Hall Publishing House, United States of America.