Guest Contributor

5 Biggest Diversity Issues in the Workplace

By | Daria Lev

It is widely recognized that a diverse workforce is likely to be a more productive one. There are many reasons why this should be – ranging from different cultural approaches, greater spread of languages, and looking at things from different personal situations – yet if you are looking to diversify recruiting, you need to consider the possible issued that diversity can bring about. There are many, and below we will discuss 5 of the biggest diversity issues that are found in the workplace.

Cultural and Ethnic Differences

Some people will not tolerate others who are of a different race, of culture, or who have different colored skin. This is a sad fact of life and while these people are in the minority, this is something that cannot be allowed to prevail in the workplace. It is a difficult problem to deal with as people tend to think they have a right to such beliefs, but it is up to the company to lay down strict guidelines regarding racial intolerance, you can learn more about it at Joonko.

The Gender Problem

This may be the 21st century, but there are still men who are reluctant to accept that women can perform any role as effectively as they do. These do tend to be older men – although it is not unusual for a gender problem to exist with younger males – it is still quite a common problem. There is also the more modern – thanks to our generally accepting society – of transgender persons in the workplace, which can be frowned upon by some. Company policy should cover these problems.

Alternative Lifestyles

Discrimination and – more likely -disrespect for gay people in the workplace is not at all unusual, and can have an effect not just on the professional performance of the individual concerned, but on their wider life. Acceptance of what is deemed as ‘alternative lifestyles’ must be incorporated when you are looking to diversify recruiting, and you will find the majority of people are open to such.

Language and Communication

Should you hire immigrants to take on certain roles, you may find they have limited command of English. Even when there is no racial or cultural problem, this can make things difficult when it comes to necessary communication between individuals and teams. It may be wise to look at hiring other bilingual persons who can help with this problem, and also instigating communication workshops or even spoken English lessons.

Disabled Workers Needs

There are many examples in which handicapped workers may need special requirements – ramps and open spaces in offices for wheelchair users, loop systems for those with hearing problems are examples – and it is not unusual for premises to be ill-equipped before recruitment. This is an area that should be assessed and attended to even if you do not as yet have disabled people in the workforce.

The above are just a few of the problems that may be faced when you are building a diverse workforce, and there are many more. The key is in making sure that company policy is understood and adhered to, and that any conflicts are dealt with appropriately.

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