Understanding Diversity In America – Management Essay
The United States could not have been called the melting pot with out diversity. In most companies there is a variety of people with different cultures, religions, personality traits and many other characteristics that
makes them different from one another. The problem with diversity is that every individual person has their own prejudices or stereotypes about certain characteristics another person has and this can cause problems in the workplace
Women gain the right to vote in 1920 thanks to their constant fight for women’s rights. It took women time to join the high ranking positions in companies due to the assumptions that men had about what women could do or where they belonged. Introducing women into the work place can create a 0positive impact to other women in subordinate positions. When subordinate women see other women in higher positions, it gives them a goal, it changes the idea that men control everything and they do not have a chance. In the army women have the opportunity to achieve the rank of General, but combat jobs are still closed to women
Age is another handicap for the young and the old. I do not mean handicap as a disability but as a disadvantage due to people’s perception of what they can do. Employees without experience are not expected to perform well and are usually not given important tasks. Older employees are usually thought as not being able to be creative or that there ways are old fashioned and do not apply to the newer generations.
People’s personalities can set the mood in the office. Some people can brighten the office and relax people and other people can make it uncomfortable to work and make time slow down. Every manager and employee has their own personality traits and people will pick up on them. People with cheerful personalities tend to be easy going and don’t usually give other people a hard time. People with not so cheerful personalities tend to bug people about work.
Religion is another personal issue that makes people act in a certain way or others act in a certain way around religious people. In an office situation where employees are in a relax setting and may curse a little, make off color jokes or comments, but they will suddenly change their behavior if a holy roller walks in, because they do not want to offend. Another issue with religious people is that sometimes other employees do not want to be around them because every other word is God or Jesus and most people do not talk that way. Due to ignorance certain people act different around Muslims since the September 11 attacks, because they relate terrorist with Muslim. There are many characteristics that make people different and managers have the responsibility to try to educate his or her employees with videos, briefings or pamphlets to make them understand what makes them different. Once employees understand that they should treat each other as they want to be treated, the better the climate in the company will be.
Schermerhorn, J, Hunt, J, & Osborn, R. (2005). Organizational Behavior. New Jersey: John Wiley & Sons, Inc.
Poynter Online. (2005) Diversity. Retrieved September 20, 2005, from http://www.poynter.org/subject.asp?id=5