Paper Example on Organizational Behavior: The Impact of Diversity in the Workplace and Organizations

Paper Type:  Research paper
Pages:  7
Wordcount:  1733 Words
Date:  2022-09-12


On numerous occasions, diversity and multiculturalism are used interchangeably while in fact there exists differences between the two terms. Diversity is the differences between people, in terms of race, sexual orientation, gender, socioeconomic status, religion, and cultural and ethnic background among others. Multiculturalism, on the other hand, delves deeper than diversity as it focuses on the understanding, inclusiveness and respect and tries to evaluate the unequal power present in the society. Thus, as most people think that race, gender and social class should not matter when looking at diversity and multiculturalism, diversity assists in developing policies that deter discrimination while multiculturalism helps in gaining an in-depth understanding of the differences between people.

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Advantages of Diversity in the Workplace

One of the major advantages of diversity and multiculturalism in the workplace is as a means of realizing greater profitability in an organization. According to a study by Cletus, Mahmood, Umar, & Ibrahim (2018), diversity in the workforce is beneficial to the sales and profitability of an organization. According to the study, companies that have greater racial diversity in their workforce have more customers, a larger share of the market, realize higher sales and achieve greater relative profits than businesses with a homogenous workforce. Additionally, individuals from different backgrounds have been observed to work more effectively together that people from similar backgrounds as they provide various perspectives and approaches in developing various business solutions (Ruiz-Jimenez, Fuentes-Fuentes, Ruiz-Arroyo, 2016).

Diversity in the work environment brings about different cultural viewpoints that drive innovation and motivate creativity. An individual's culture and way of life impacts the manner by which the individual views the world. An assortment of perspectives alongside the wide-ranging individual and expert experience of a universal group can offer new points of view that inspire fellow workers to see the work environment, and the world, in a different way. Diversity of ideas and thought has been observed to breed innovation and drive creativity, taking care of business problems and addressing client issues in new and energizing ways. For instance, L'Oreal, the cosmetic giant, attributes much of its significant achievements in developing markets to its multicultural product development groups. Different voices, points of view, and characters reflecting off each other can facilitate out-of-the-box thinking within the organization. By offering a stage for the open trade of thoughts, organizations can receive the greatest rewards of diversity in the working environment (Hong & Doz, 2013). Additionally various studies reiterate this thought, inferring that the most ideal approach to guarantee the improvement of new thoughts is through a differing and comprehensive workforce.

Moreover, diversity and multiculturalism guarantees local market insight and knowledge making a business progressively profitable and competitive. A multicultural workforce can give a business a significant edge when venturing into new markets. Frequently, a service or product should be adjusted to succeed in the global market. Understanding local traditions, guidelines, and, laws, as well as the competitive scene, can assist a business with thriving. In addition, local associations, local language abilities, and cultural comprehension can help exponential global business improvement. Also, increased competitiveness results in improved profitability for an organization. Research from McKinsey likewise reiterates the fact workplace diversity is useful for a business' primary concern. In fact, organizations that are ethnically diverse were demonstrated to be 35% more bound to have financial returns over the national industrial median (Reynolds, 2019).

Diversity in the workplace provides stimulation for the growth and personal development of the employees in the company. The exposure of the workforce in an environment of various cultures, opinions and ideas facilitate the development of various skills and personal growth. Therefore, people with diverse characteristics can provide a suitable platform for developing and testing new ideas. Additionally, diversity in the workplace enhances the strategies of troubleshooting and problem solving in a business (Williams, 2014). Consequently, because of the various perspective sand strategies, the workforce is in a position to effectively address the multiple issues or tasks, solve problem and develop innovative and creative solutions in the organization. Also, employees in a diverse organization are able to acclimatize to various situations and have the ability to work around the distinctions in cultures, personality and background as the organization is composed of people of various cultural, economic and ethnic backgrounds.

Another positive impact of diversity in an organization is that by drawing from a culturally diverse pool of talent, the business is in a better position to retain the best talent. Various studies on employee recruitment reveal that diversity is important to potential employees as they evaluate various job offers from various companies (Dobbin & Kalev, 2016). In the global bob market, organizations that demonstrate they have invested significantly in fostering a diversified, multicultural and inclusive workplace are better placed in selecting the right candidates for their organizational needs. Consequently, making diversity a chief element in the recruitment process expands an organization's talent pool of potential employees. On top of presenting the organizations as an attractive option for ambitious globally minded potential employees, diversity also assists in retaining them once hired; thus diversity of religion, gender race, and ethnicity aids in improving employee retention and reduces the cost of employee turnover.

Disadvantages of Diversity in the Workplace

A major disadvantage of diversity in the workplace is that managers and recruitment team place too much emphasis on leadership qualities. The objective of diversity and multiculturalism in an organization is to develop various strengths that allow people in the organization to grow over time; thus diversity in the workplace seeks out experts who excel in the job functions, chosen career and a team environment. Although diversity results in various benefits, it can also be problematic when the recruitment teams and management hire people who all want to be in charge (Gkorezis, Petridou, & Krouklidou, 2015). In seeking to promote a diverse workforce, the major initiative of diversity fails when the objective focuses too much on promoting the individual that the team. Thus, there must be leaders, individuals that are highly passionate in their work and people who are content with their current positions, otherwise healthy competition can spiral out of control and become dangerous.

Subsequently, diversity in the workplace can result in too many opinions. As stated earlier, a benefit of diversity is that it taps into various perspectives to develop innovative and creative solutions. Thus as organizations focus on diversity and multiculturalism, they aims to tap in to the various opinions that are expected to make it easier to make it easier for the company to progress. However, oftentimes, the large number of varying opinions available create problem for a diverse organization (Nye, 2007). As everyone has a right and gets a chance to be heard in a diverse organization, sorting through all the differing opinions can lean to slowing down of projects in the company. Additionally, to prevent the slowing down of vital projects, lack of consensus in the midst of varying opinions results in the supervisor making the final decision. Consequently, in these situations, some people will be right while other will be wrong. Over time, this process ac result in dissention in the ranks as some individuals feels that their opinions are being ignored thus avoid offering their ides in the future hence reducing the benefits of diversity in the organization

Diversity in an organization can also lead to communication problems within the organization. Individuals from various cultures an ethnic background may not speak a common language or the same language as the organization's primary communication option. Although hiring people from varying backgrounds can provide varying and unique points of view, it can also result in issues with how the employees communicate among themselves. According to Dobbin and Kalev (2016), it is observed that even in situations where the same language is used by the employees, there can exists difference in the meaning of various word and jargon which can result in confusion in the workplace. There are various tools available to solve this problem, but they are not as efficient and misunderstanding s can arise that eventually lead to conflicts in the diverse teams.

Similarly, an increase in diversity in an organization leads to hostility in some teams as various perspectives create unique approaches and opinions that create severe disagreement in the workplace. Most people believe that their individual points of view are correct; thus they share such perspective with other people. In a diverse team, with everyone offering their unique strategies and opinion, disagreements on n individual's opinions can be and are often viewed as an attack against that person integrity, character or even spirituality. According to Hunt, Layton, and Prince (2015), many people do not separate the various elements of their professional, personal and spiritual life. Thus, disagreements among people from various ethnic, religious, and socioeconomic backgrounds are often viewed as an attack on these aspects. As a result, the emphasis on diversity can lead to hostility when polarized differences exist in an organization.

Diversity presents a risk of lack of job security for existing workers as an emphasis of diversity in the workplace can lead an organization to focus more on offshoring. Domestic diversity for most organization is often an expensive venture. To ensure a diverse workforce, organizations incur heavy costs in salaries and benefit in hiring the best individuals for the existing job positions. Consequently, companies typically resort to offshoring opportunities that assist in providing unique perspective to the corporate identity without incurring the heavy costs of diversifying their workforce. As a result, there is lack of job security for existing employees, which in turn limits their productivity and focus. Nye (2007) observed that popular freelance platforms such as Fiverr and Upwork play a significant role in jeopardizing job security. Thus, organizations opt to hire freelancers from such platforms at a lower rate ad get equal or superior work and forgo diversity strategies as well as laying off worker whose functions can be contracted through thee platforms.

Challenges of Diversity in the Workplace

A major benefit of diversity in the workplace it that it provides access to local expertise for international businesses. However, there are challenges of diversity when it comes to multicultural teams as integration across such teams can be challenging in the face of negative cultural stereotypes and prejudice. Although local expertise in an invaluable asset, it is critical to encourage integrations between teams to avoid employees from various backgrounds working in isolation thus limiting transfer of knowledge. Multicultural team integration can be challenging to overcome especially if there exists...

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Paper Example on Organizational Behavior: The Impact of Diversity in the Workplace and Organizations. (2022, Sep 12). Retrieved from

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