A Critical Evaluation of Workplace Diversity Measuring the Intended Benefits of Managing Diversity

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Diversity represents a wide spectrum of tangible characteristics and somewhat less-transparent personality-driven attributes which either contribute or detract from various social interactions in the workplace.With this definition in mind, managing diversity represents the elements of embracing and incorporating a wide variety of human differences (or commonalities) into the daily practice of business so as to provide enhanced benefit to the entire workplace and its processes. The goal of managing diversity is for leadership and subordinates alike to take a rather proactive approach to building enhanced inter-personal relationships and then applying this harmony to goals of higher productivity and teamwork.Managing diversity is not a simplistic task, as there are often elements of prejudice, resistance to diversity-driven policy changes and conflicting human values which make the process of creating a harmonious organisation difficult. It is only when individuals within the workplace perceive equality and the full utilisation of their talents that efforts at managing diversity can bring sustained benefits to the company. This paper will further elaborate on understanding diversity and offer a critical evaluation of modern diversity management efforts in the organisational environment.Landy amp. Conte (2006) define diversity to include various differences in abilities, interests, talents and experiences. outside of the demographic differences such as ethnicity or gender. The authors categorise this relatively contemporary viewpoint of diversity as multiculturalism, in which unique sets of personal values and beliefs are both recognised and embraced. Supporting this notion is Thomas (1992) who suggests that diversity and the multicultural environment is categorised by diminished social subcultures and the minimisation of prejudice in which all members of the organisation strive for cohesion and unity in all business elements which promote team-working philosophies.