Student Paper: Diverse Workforce Management

1.0 Introduction 2

2.0 Key business reasons for emphasis diverse workforce management 3

2.1 Definition of workforce management 3

2.2 Reasons for the emphasis on diversity workforce management 3

2.2.1 The service economy 4

2.2.2 The globalization of markets 4

2.2.3 Requirement for more teamwork in new business strategies 5

2.2.4 Requirement from mergers and alliance 5

2.2.5 The changing labor market 6

3.0 Reason for no simple relationship between diversity and business performance 6

3.1 The relationship between diversity and business performance 6

3.2 Activities and programs enhance the influence of diversity on business performance 7

3.2.1 Strategic staffing 7

3.2.2 Human resource development programs 7

3.2.3 Reward and compensation 8

3.2.4 Building employment relationship 9

4.0 Responses to questions on diversity 9

4.1 Definition and reasons of discrimination in diverse workforce 9

4.2 Solutions 10

4.2.1 Job design for diverse workgroups 190 10

4.2.2 Offering equal opportunities to the diverse workgroups 11

4.2.3 Creating the Multicultural Organization 12

5.0 Elements of company policies on diversity management 13

Due to the importance of management of the diverse workforce, especially under the trend of globalization, there are a great number of companies integrating their company policies with the emphasis of diversity management. 13

5.1 Diversity in company’s philosophy 13

5.2 Diversity in company’s mission 14

5.3 Diversity in corporate strategy 15

5.4 Diversity in company’s culture 15

6.0 Sources of intergenerational friction and the solutions 16

6.1 Sources for intergenerational friction 16

6.1.1 Difference in background 16

6.1.2 Difference in attitude 17

6.1.3 Difference in Life and working style 17

6.1.4 Difference in communication style 18

6.2 Solutions to intergenerational friction 18

6.2.1 Keep open communication channels 18

6.2.2 Provide training and development opportunities 19

6.2.3 Create an atmosphere of mutual empathy and respect 19

7.0 Argument against workforce diversity management 19

7.1 No simple relation between workforce diversity and business performance 20

7.2 Homogenous workforce is more effective than diverse workforce 20

7.3Conflicts and disagreement 21

8.0 Conclusions 22

1.0 Introduction

This paper concentrates on the diverse workforce management. It emphasizes six different aspects of workforce diversity. The first one is about reasons for the emphasis on diversity workforce management, which includes the requirement from service economy, globalization, new business strategies, mergers and alliance, and changing labor market.

The second is on the reasons why there is no simple relationship between diversity and business performance. That is to say, organizations need to depend on several programs and activities to manage diverse workforce in order to help organization have good business performance.

The third one is the response to questions on diversity, which is on discrimination due to diverse workforce in this paper. And there are some solutions to remove discrimination such as proper job design, offering equal opportunities, creating the multicultural organization.

The fourth one is on some elements of company policies on diversity management such as diversity in company’s philosophy, diversity in company’s mission, diversity in corporate strategy as well as diversity in company’s culture.

The fifth one is on sources of intergenerational friction and the solutions. Sources for intergenerational friction are often because of difference in background, attitude, Life and working style, communication style. And the solutions for manage the intergenerational friction includes keeping open communication channels, providing training and development opportunities and creating an atmosphere of mutual empathy and respect.

And the last one is on arguments against workforce diversity management. There are three major reasons. At first, there is no simple relation between workforce diversity and business performance. Moreover, homogenous workforce is more effective than diverse workforce. Furthermore, there are more conflicts and disagreement in diverse workforce than homogenous one.

2.0 Key business reasons for emphasis diverse workforce management

2.1 Definition of workforce management

As Leopold, Harris and Watson (2005) mentioned that diversity management is the view that accepts the workforce consists of a diverse population of people. And the so called diversity is made up of visible and non-visible differences which include elements such as sex, age, back ground, race, disability, personality and work style and so on. Leopold, Harris and Watson (2005) also advocated that the diversity management is founded on the premise that harnessing these differences will create a productive environment in which everybody feels valued, where their talents are made full use of and in which organizational goals are met.

2.2 Reasons for the emphasis on diversity workforce management

In nowadays market, there are full of hyper competition, which results in the emphasis of the ability of companies to attract and retain talents people, especially the emphasis of the effective management of a diversity workface (Millmore et al. 2007). According to Cascio (2010), there are five key reasons for the importance of emphasis the effective management of a diversity workface, which are as the follows.

2.2.1 The service economy

As Cascio (2010) descried, there are increasing rates for workers in service industries, which involves lots of interactions with customers such as the jobs in banking, financial services, health services, tourism and retailing and so on. Because these employees who are similar to their customer, they can have a better communication with their customers, for example the similarities in culture, religion, and languages can help the employees have more efficient interactions between their customers and better business results for the company (Cascio 2010). And meanwhile, Cascio (2010) also gave us a data which shows that the combined buying power from Hispanics, African Americans, and Asians, people with disabilities, and gays, lesbians, bisexual as well as transsexuals is nearly $1.5 trillion, which can’t be ignored by any company. Due to the situation, it is important for these companies especially in the service industry to increase the diversity of their workforce, in which the well management of the diversity is crucial to the development of these companies.

2.2.2 The globalization of markets

According to Dunning and John (1981) as well as William (2007), we can see multinational corporations nowadays are faced with wider consumer markets as well as distribution networks due to the globalization, which has increased the diversity in workforce in corporations of every industries all the world around. And meanwhile, the globalization also gives more choices to the customers, who have more power to insist their needs and preferences (Cascio 2010). In order to satisfy the fluctuant needs and preferences of customers, it is crucial for companies to well manage the diverse workforce to effectively integrate and synthesize individual workers of different backgrounds with organizational goals (William 2007). IBM, for instance, has done a well job of managing the global workforce diversity, which become an essence of attracting and retaining the best talents for the company (IBM n.d.).

2.2.3 Requirement for more teamwork in new business strategies

Just as Cascio (2010) mentioned, work teams are the best weapons for companies to implement new strategies which emphasis on better quality, innovation, and cost control as well as speed. While teams indicate the diversity in the workforces differing in the perspectives, capabilities, experience, and education, this can breed creativity and help the well function of the company (Cascio 2010). Due to this, it is important for companies to manage the diversity in workforce to concentrate on new products development and improvement on customer service to facilitate the execution of business strategies (Cascio 2010).

2.2.4 Requirement from mergers and alliance

It is essential for companies to integrate the financial, technological, production and marketing resources of the new partners, when conducting mergers as well as strategic international alliance (Cascio 2010). And the key to successfully handle the problems arousing from mergers and strategic international alliance is to integrate the differences in corporate cultures, which varies in several aspects such as the customs of business conducting, how employees are expected to behave, and so on (Cascio 2010). Due to the conflicts resulting from culture shock which may increase the difficulty in implementation of mergers and strategic international alliances, it is a must for companies to understand and capitalize on diversity to facilitate their business goals and make profits.

2.2.5 The changing labor market

Cascio (2010) also advocated that our workplaces will be more diverse in very aspects, including more women workers, more immigrants, more people of different color, and more elder worker as well. To meet the future challenges and changes, it is necessary for both the workers and managers to respect and understand the different races, ethnic groups, cultures, languages, religions, sexual orientations, and so on. And on the basis of the understanding and respect, the trust of every level in the workplace can be well build, which can improve the work performance, sense of responsibility as well as working efficiency and effectiveness (Cascio 2010).

3.0 Reason for no simple relationship between diversity and business performance

3.1 The relationship between diversity and business performance

According to Jayne and Dipboye (2004), we can get that diversity can help organization have a better business performance, via creativity from diverse team work, meeting different customers’ needs as well as diverse working talents. But meanwhile, organizations also need resort to several initiatives to help company manage the diverse workforce so as to improve business performance, which include the staffing programs, training and development programs, performance management programs as well as the employment relationship building programs and so on (Hansen 2003). In another words, just depending on the diversity, organization may not achieve good business performance. The followings are some programs which are essential for organization to manage the diverse workforce to achieve better performance (Corporate Leadership Council 2003).

3.2 Activities and programs enhance the influence of diversity on business performance

3.2.1 Strategic staffing

Although the diversity workforce may increase the creativity of the organization and its performance, it is essential for organizations to recognize the importance of employment recruitment and selection when attracting diverse working talents (Snell & Bohlander2007). Referring to the employee recruitment and selection, organization should begin with the job analysis including the proper job requirement and specification for each position to achieve the person-job fit as well as person-organization fit (Snell & Bohlander2007). Recruitment of minority, such as recruitment the Asian American manager to charge the market of Asian American may help the organization have a better achievement in that market due to the similarity between the manager and customers(Snell & Bohlander2007). These kinds of proper staffing programs can strengthen the function of diversity workforce to help company have a better performance.

3.2.2 Human resource development programs

Nankervis, Compton, and Baird (2005) claimed that besides recruitment and selection, human resource development is also an effective way for companies to build workforce, the diversity workforce also included, to help organization have a good performance. Let’s take the training process for example, on the basis of general system model. Based on the training model, there are three phrases of training and development for employees, including assessment phrase, training and development phrase and evaluation phase. Especially, in the assessment phrase, the individual needs, demographic needs as well as organization needs analysis are very crucial for the right design and implement the training programs for the employees, especially for the diverse workforce (Nankervis, Compton, and Baird 2005). Due to the working group is diverse in age, gender, experience, races, education background and so on, proper training needs assessment and implementation become so crucial elements of building the diverse workforce(Nankervis, Compton, and Baird 2005). For instance, as for new working staff, the case study and role play training tactics may be the proper choice for them, which may bring realism and insight into dilemmas and experiences to the green hands. By and large, the human resource development is important to facilitate the diverse workforce to help company have good performance.

3.2.3 Reward and compensation

To improve the business performance of the organization, the incentives such as reward and compensation are essential tools to strengthen the function of diversity. Ivancevish (2007) claimed in the book that compensation and reward are a kind of motivation that predisposes employees to act in specific, goal oriented manner. And the proper and suitable incentives may improve the working morale and productivity of the diverse workforce. For instance, the profit sharing means may provide a group incentive for increased productivity, enhance employees’ security and identification with the company as well as attract and retain workers more easily, which can directly help the diverse workforce to improve the business performance of their company.

3.2.4 Building employment relationship

People are the backbone of the organization, who can not only facilitate the organization having an outstanding performance, but also hinder the development of the origination (Snell & Bohlander 2007). It is necessary for the organization to build a good employment relationship, especially in the diverse workforce to have a better business performance. For example, offering the diverse workforce with kinds of benefits voluntarily by the company such as pay holidays, sick leave, and health insurance and so on can increase the sense of belonging of the employees and work morale to facilitate the company to have a better performance (Ivancevish 2007). Meanwhile offering some employee services to the diverse workforce including education programs, preretirement programs, child care and social and recreational programs and so on can also help the organization build a good relationship with its diverse workforce and then get a better performance under the support from the employees (Ivancevish 2007).

4.0 Responses to questions on diversity

When being asked how to manage the discrimination due to diverse workforce by people, it is crucial to explain the definition of discrimination, reasons for that, and solution. The followings are the three issues when referring to the discrimination problems due to diverse workforce.

4.1 Definition and reasons of discrimination in diverse workforce

According to Millmore et al. (2007) discrimination means treat different groups of people unjustly or prejudicially and in the workplace, discrimination happens when one employee treat another employee unjustly or less favorable compared with others. For instance, discrimination means a female worker is paid less than her male colleague with the same type and quantity of jobs or minority ethnic workers have less opportunity to be promoted than the white colleagues (Leopold, Harris, & Watson, 2005). And the reason why someone is discriminated by others in the workplace is often because of the race, family status or marital status, gender, sexual orientation, color, disability, age, ethnic background, nationality, religion or belief and so on. due to the above reasons, the discrimination in workplace may happen in the process of staff recruitment and selection, benefit or compensation offered to employees, trainings, promotion and so on(Australian Human Rights Commission 2010). For the business, if they want to grow, it is essential for companies to rely on the diverse workforce, while it is also necessary for companies to well solve the problems of discrimination due to the diverse workforce (Cascio 2010). The following are the solution to the discrimination in diverse workplace.

4.2 Solutions

4.2.1 Job design for diverse workgroups 190

Nankervis, Compton and Baird (2005) advocated that it is important for companies to accurately analyze and describe the jobs for its employees which can help reduce the discrimination and ensure the cost effective achievement of organizational objectives. For instance, there are more and more employees with different sex orientation such as gay, lesbian, bisexual, transsexual employees. According to Cascio (2010, p.140), gay, lesbian, bisexual, transsexual (GLBT) employees, as a group, are highly educated; they comprise, by some estimates, 6 percent of the population (about 17 million people); and they have a buying power of $ 660 billion. And meanwhile, GLBT consumers are very loyal to specific brands and wish to support companies that support the gay community and also provide equal rights for GLBT workers. Based on the situation, it is necessary for companies to give its GLBT employees proper job design such as choosing GLBT employees to charge the GLBT clients, due to the similarities in both of the employees and clients, their business performance may be much better due to the thorough understanding and well communication between the GLBT employees and their clients. And meanwhile the GLBT employees may also receive less discrimination from customers or peers due to the surrounding of them are the same kind of people (Cascio 2010).

4.2.2 Offering equal opportunities to the diverse workgroups

Due to the influence of globalization, the fluctuant changes in the micro as well as micro environment for business world, employing a more diverse workforce may improve the ability of one organization to broaden the appeal of its services or products into a wider range of clients or customers (Leopold, Harris & Watson2005). Meanwhile it is also important for organizations to deal with the discriminating issues stemming from the diverse work force. To attract and retain more fantastic diverse workforce, it is essential for companies to offer equal opportunities to its employees as a means of reduce discrimination in diverse workforce.

On one hand, there is already some legal framework for equal opportunity by federal laws, executive orders, court case and state and local statues (Snell& Bohlander 2007).For instance, under the Uniformed Services Employment and Reemployment Rights Act of 1994 in U.S., individuals who enter the military for a short period of service can return to their jobs of private sector without the risk of seniority of benefits (Snell& Bohlander 2007). The Fair Employment Practice Laws, Equal pay Act of 1993, Pregnancy discrimination Act of 1978 and so on in U.S. all offer the equal opportunities for diverse workgroups (Snell& Bohlander 2007).

On the other hand, organizations should also provide proper approaches to deal with discrimination in diverse workforce besides these legal frame works. Sexual harassment is still very common in the workplace although there is legislation against it (Snell& Bohlander 2007). To protect the equal right of the workers, especially the female workers, it is important for managers and supervisors of companies to take special precautions and try to prevent it. As referring to the disable workers, it is necessary for organizations to offer them equal opportunities and treatment. For instance, it is relatively easy for organizations to install telephone amplifiers for hearing impaired workers or magnifying glasses for sight impaired workers. And with these facilities, these workers can have better working morale and performance as well as increased belonging to their company (Cascio 2010).

By and large, besides obeying the legal frame works on equal opportunities offering to employees, organization should also implement some proper and effective approaches to reduce the discriminations such as sexual harassment, discrimination on sexual orientation, disable individuals, different colors, different nationalities, and older age people and so on.

4.2.3 Creating the Multicultural Organization

To reduce the troubles of discrimination in diverse workgroup, the key is to increase the awareness and sensitivity towards these diversities in the race, family status or marital status, gender, sexual orientation, color, disability, age, ethnic background, nationality, religion or belief and so on, in another word building a multicultural organization is important( Brownell 2003).

At first, the language training programs is crucial for organizations to build a diverse culture when referring to hire diverse workforce such as American Asians, Hispanics and other foreign nationals, which can reduce the misunderstanding among employees as well as employer and enhance the effectiveness of communication in the working groups (Brownell 2003). With a better understand and communication, the action of exclusiveness will be reduced, which directly remove the discrimination (Brownell 2003; Cox 1991). Furthermore, to provide direct access to company’s senior executives for groups of especially composed minority is also a choice for organization to improve the minority group members’ influence on the culture and policy of the organization (Cox 1991).Moreover, the development of the climates with flexible, highly tolerant feature can encourage diverse ways to solve problems to all the employees, which may promoting the pluralism of organizational culture and reduce the discrimination(Cox 1991).

5.0 Elements of company policies on diversity management

Due to the importance of management of the diverse workforce, especially under the trend of globalization, there are a great number of companies integrating their company policies with the emphasis of diversity management.

5.1 Diversity in company’s philosophy

IBM is the forefather of advocating diversity in its workforce, which is based on its philosophy that diversity is the ‘bridge between the workplace and the marketplace’ (IBM n.d.). Based on that, IBM focuses on attracting and retaining the best talents in its workforce with different color, gender, race, religion, nationality and so on in order to foster a creative environment to maximize the productivity of its employees and the relation to the global market (IBM n.d.).

5.2 Diversity in company’s mission

DIY retailer B&Q is always the leader in its diversity policies reflected in its mission that it wants to be a great company that can be trusted to respect the quality of life of all the people and communities we touch (Leopold, Harris, & Watson2005). And based on the research by Johnson-Hillery et al. (1997) that older clients viewed sales people of the same age more positively than the younger staff, B&Q has introduced the policy of targeting recruitment activities at the age of over 50s to fulfill its mission in diversity aspect, which led to a higher profits, lower staff turnover and absenteeism as well as an improvement in customer service compared with other stores (Leopold, Harris, & Watson2005).

Fannie Mae (2010) is a government-sponsored company which concentrates its development in the secondary mortgage market of U.S. To achieve its mission of providing liquidity, stability, and affordability to the mortgage industry, Fannie Mae advocates the diversity in the workforce as well as its workplace (Fannie Mae 2010). It has tried every effort to foster an environment in which the working staff can engage and contribute their diverse ideas as well as views to make effective solutions which can facilitate Fannie Mae to meet its business goals.

Meanwhile Sempra Energy (2007) has also recognized the importance of diversity management. In its mission, it states that to develop, manage and ensure a workplace environment where everyone is treated with respect, and where human, cultural and systems diversity is recognized, valued and leveraged in the communities and the global marketplace (Sempra Energy 2007).

5.3 Diversity in corporate strategy

Ford as the giant in auto manufacturing industry has a long history of diversity strategic management. For instance, it promotes equal opportunities for its employee’s world widely. In the process of staffing recruitment, promotion and other aspects, Ford shows respect and dignity to the talents from every corner of the world, which facilitate the future development of Ford a lot (Millmore et al. 2007).

IBM is always committed to diversity management that it has developed a global strategic framework for diversity to emphasize the service to its clients due to fluctuant changes in the macro and micro business environment (IBM n.d.). For instance, since the year 1953, IBM has called for the equity in staffing recruitment of regardless of race, color, or creed (IBM n.d.). And until now in more than 69 countries, there is diverse legislation for IBM workers within the corporate (IBM n.d.). With the help of the diversity management in the strategy, IBM has attracted a pool of diverse talents from all over the world, which makes it enjoy the continuous success.

5.4 Diversity in company’s culture

Till now , McDonald’s (2010) owns more than 31,000 restaurants in 118 countries one of the main factors contributing to the success of the world famous fast food chain restaurants are the culture of diversity and inclusion. It has the culture of providing equal opportunities for everyone to succeed and contribute. To integrate its culture with its business, McDonald’s (2010) has implemented a great many activities including integrating the diversity initiatives with its daily business practices, implementation of a effective diversity education curriculum, proper business networks as well as the building of the partnership with minority organizations.

Fannie Mae has also fostered a culture of diversity and inclusion, which advocates providing facilitation and support, such as diversity learning to develop its people as more effective workers, making sure that benefits, total rewards and compensations, training programs is able to meet a diverse employees’ needs, getting the feedback from diverse employees about the effect and challenges of various programs and initiatives on Fannie Mae’s business via adopting a Diversity Advisory Council and so on (Fannie Mae 2010). This culture of diversity facilitates Fannie Mae enriching its talent pool and providing an array of innovative solutions as well as strategies to meet the challenges.

6.0 Sources of intergenerational friction and the solutions

According to the survey from Ernst & Young (2008), under the trend of globalization and the advent of highly diverse workforces in workplace, intergenerational frictions are increased. As Ivancevish (2007) described in the book that a typical workplace includes three separate generations of employees including the baby boomer generation (born between 1946 and 1964), the generation X (born between 1965 and 1980) and the generation Y (born between 1981 and 2000). The following will give some sources for the friction among them.

6.1 Sources for intergenerational friction

6.1.1 Difference in background

According to Benkowski (2001) and Hamlin (2006), we can get the following information. Baby boomers grew up with the idea that they were special and they grew up in the period when the information age just started with the introduction of automation, computers as well as calculators. Generation X witnessed the downsizing in the 1980s and their parents having long work hours as well as sacrificing their leisure times to work. They were born in the computer age when they were just toddlers they began to learn how to use them. Generation Y were affected by the violence as well as terrorism such as the September 11th attacks. They grew up under multiple cultures with the philosophy of ‘no one left behind’.

6.1.2 Difference in attitude

Benkowski (2001) and Hamlin (2006) also claim the following idea. Baby boomers had the authority and politicians figures in esteem and meanwhile they were inclined to be competitive, optimistic and dedicated with the sense that they could change the world and manage all including the work, family and health due to the attention concentrated on them. Generation X held the attitude that life is life and work is work, which can’t be twisted. While generation Y is a practical and techno-savvy generation, who don’t want to be shown how to do things but prefer deal with by themselves. They are good at dealing with situations as well as the environments.

6.1.3 Difference in Life and working style

Benkowski (2001), Hamlin (2006) and Ivancevish (2007) gave the following comment on the life and work style of different generations. Baby Boomers concerned their quality of life more than money and they held the idea that changing job may hinder their progress. And they prefer interactive learning sessions to lectures and they prefer get information from newspapers, magazines and books. Generation X wants flexibility, training and education, more money and benefits, and more opportunities. They tend to move from company to company and are not concentrated on loyalty. Moreover, the generation Y has strong opinions about their career path. They want to negotiate higher starting salaries as well as depend on using multiple job-offers to receive signing bonuses.

6.1.4 Difference in communication style

Baby boomers often want lots of face to face feedback and documentation due to their focusing on communication. Generation X prefers direct and immediate communication. And generation Y is fond of modern communication means such as e-mail, voice mail and so on. (Hamlin 2006; Benkowski 2001)

By and large, due to the above differences among theses generations, we can understand why there are so many conflicts among the different generations.

6.2 Solutions to intergenerational friction

To reduce the intergenerational friction in the diverse workforce, it is recommendable for organizations to adopt the following means.

6.2.1 Keep open communication channels

As Hamlin (2006) and Benkowski (2001) advocated thatit is important for organizations to foster the open communication channels. In another words, originations should help the three generation employees understand the preferences in their communication styles and show respect to each other.

6.2.2 Provide training and development opportunities

Benkowski (2001), Hamlin (2006) and Ivancevish (2007) claimed that it is essential for organizations to know how to value the difference and leverage the talents in the three generations in order to put the right people in the right position. Furthermore, it is necessary for organizations to design proper education programs for these employees, for instance, providing the baby boomers with a live instructor, providing generation X with various learning methods and let generation Y jump in and figure it out for themselves.

6.2.3 Create an atmosphere of mutual empathy and respect

Benkowski (2001), Hamlin (2006) and Ivancevish (2007) also emphasize the importance of teambuilding and creation the atmosphere of fellowship. It is smart for organizations to create an atmosphere of mutual empathy and respect via teambuilding and fellowship setting to make different generation cooperate which can facilitate organizations to have a better performance. To create such atmosphere, it is necessary for of organizations to make the Baby Boomers realize their contribution as well as hard work is crucial, make Generation X know the importance of their skills and knowledge to help companies to achieve goals and make Generation Y understand their comfort with technology is cherished.

7.0 Argument against workforce diversity management

Diverse workforce means the diversity in the race, sex, age, back ground, personality work style and more, which even makes the workplace more complicated (Harris & Watson 2005), so it is not necessary for organizations to make special effort to manage workforce diversity. The arguments are as follows.

7.1 No simple relation between workforce diversity and business performance

Although the workforce becomes more and more diverse, there is still no simple relationship between it and the performance of an organization. As Snell and Bohlander (2007) as well as Nankervis, Compton, and Baird (2005) claimed that the diverse workforce needs the help of other activities such as strategic staffing programs, human resource development programs, reward and compensation and so on and then the diverse workforce can help organization have a better performance and achieve its business goals. While via these programs or activities to facilitate the management of diverse workforce needs time and money, it is a kind of waste. For instance, to put diverse workforce in the right place, it needs lots of time and other resource consumption on the human resource recruitment and selection aspects, such as proper job analysis for diverse workforce really time consuming (Snell & Bohlander2007). Moreover, for well management of diverse workforce, it is important to develop appropriate training and development programs for the employees, for example, it consumes lots of time to assess the different needs from diverse workgroups and meanwhile it also waste lots of money and time on training means design such as whether choose off the job training or on the job training for the employees, or whether adopt the case study training tactic or role play tactic for the employees waste lots of time and even worse still can’t have the desired results(Nankervis, Compton & Baird2005). So there is no need to devote too much on management of the diverse workforce.

7.2 Homogenous workforce is more effective than diverse workforce

Compared with diverse workforce, homogeneous work force can be more effectively managed by the organization, due to their similarities. The human resource development programs, for example, for diverse workforce, it needs a great deal of time and money as well as other resources such as different needs assessment, training implementation and evaluation (Nankervis, Compton & Baird2005). While due to the like mind in the homogeneous workforce, it is much easier for organizations to conduct the need assessment, implementation the trainings and the evaluation, because one size can be fit for all the homogeneous work force, which can help organizations save a lot(Moore, H. 2002). Meanwhile, it also relatively easy for companies to manage the homogeneous work force to achieve business goals, for example, in some manufacturing industries, time is limited, it is necessary for the leadership to directly distribute tasks to employees (Seijts2006). Under such situation, the homogeneous workforce is easy to be managed due to the one-size-fits-all situation, without extra disputes as in diverse work groups. All in all, managing the homogeneous work force is more money and time saving than the diverse workforce, so it is no need to make too many efforts on management of the diverse workforce.

7.3Conflicts and disagreement

Due to difference in the diverse workforce, such as the differences in culture, education background, religion, attitude, work style, personality and so on, there are often several conflicts, disputes and resistance in the workplace (Hamlin 2006; Benkowski 2001). On the one hand, the barriers of different culture, perspectives and language may hinder the communication among diverse workforce, which may result in confusion, misunderstanding, lack of teamwork and low work morale (Moore2002). On the other hand, some resistance and conflicts may occur due to the diversity. For example, some employees may refuse to some changes in workplace, while organizations have to manage some changes to meet the need of workforce diversity, which may results lots of resistance and conflicts and directly affect the performance of the organization (Hamlin 2006; Benkowski 2001). In a conclusion, there are many challenges for organizations when involved in the management of workforce diversity, which is not necessary.

8.0 Conclusions

This paper has made a deliberate investigation on the different aspect of workforce diversity. Referring to the reasons for management on diverse workforce, it gives some proper analysis and then makes a conclusion that it is so important for organizations to effectively manage the diverse workforce.

On the relationship between diversity and business performance aspect, it gives proper investigation and then gets the conclusion that although diverse workforce is a key factor for one organization’s performance, it still needs the help of other activities. That is to say, only depending on diverse workforce, there can be a better business performance for organizations.

As referring to the questions on discrimination due to diverse workforce, firstly, it analyzes the reasons why there is discrimination. And then it offers effective methods for reduce the discrimination such as job design, offering equality and so on.

On the area of companies’ policy on diversity management, it emphasizes the importance of management diverse workforce in organizations’ policies via the examples from corporations such as IBM, DIY retailer B&Q, Fannie Mae, Sempra Energy, McDonald and so on.

When referring to the intergenerational friction, this paper offers some proper suggestions to deal with these conflicts on the basis on the analysis on its causes. And at last, it also gives some arguments against too much focus on management of the diversity forces.


Australian Human Rights Commission 2010, what is discrimination and harassment,, viewed 4 July 2010,

Benkowski, J. A. 2001, Generation gap in the workplace between baby boomers and generation X, electronic version, University of Wisconsin-Stout,

Brownell, J. 2003, Developing Receiver-Centered Communication in Diverse Organizations, Listening Professional,

Bryner, J. 2010, Big generation gaps in work attitudes, Live Science, viewed 5 July,

Cascio, W.F. 2010, Managing human resources: Productivity, quality of work life, profits, 8th edn, McGraw Hill, p. 140

Corporate Leadership Council 2003, Recruiting, retaining, and developing diverse employees,, viewed 28th June 2010,

Cox, T. 1991, The multicultural organization, electronic version, University of Michigan, viewed 4 July, 2010,

Dunning & John, H. 1981, International production and the multinational enterprise, HarperCollins Publishers Ltd, London,

Ernst & Young 2008, The generation gap: the real story at Ernst & Young, Ernst & Young Global Limited, UK,

Fannie Mae 2010, Diversity & Inclusion,, viewed 5 July, 2010,

Jayne, M. E. & Dipboye, R. L.2004, Leveraging diversity to improve business performance: Research finding and recommendations for organizations, Wiley Periodicals, Inc., viewed 28th June 2010,

Johnson Hillery, J., Kang, J. & Tuan, W. 1997, The difference between elderly consumer satisfaction levels and retail sales personnel’s perceptions, International Journal of retail & distribution management,

Hansen, F. 2003, Diversity’s business case doesn’t add up, Workforce, USA,

Hamlin, S. 2006, How to talk so people listen, Harper Collins, New York,

IBM n.d., Executive Corner – Global Workforce Diversity,,, viewed 28th June 2010,

Ivancevish, J.M. 2007, Human resource management, 10th edn, Mc-Graw Hill, New York,

Leopold, J., Harris, L. & Watson, T.2005, The strategic managing of human resources, Prentice Hall, London,

McDonald’s 2010, Diversity at McDonald’s: A culture of inclusion and diversity,, viewed 5 July, 2010,

Millmore, M., Lewis, P., Saunders, M., Thornhill, A. & Morrow, T. 2007, Strategic human resource management: Contemporary issues, Prentice Hall, England,

Moore, H. 2002, Mastery of the big picture: Trends and issues affecting the future of business, electronic version,, viewed 7 July 2010,

Nankervis, A., Compton, R. & Baird, M. 2005, Human resource management: Strategies and process, 5th edn, Nelson Australia Pty Limited, n.p.

Ron, Z., Claire, R. & Bob, F. 2000, Generations at Work: Managing the clash of Veterans, Boomers, Xers, and Nexters in your workplace, American Management Association, New York,

Sempra Energy 2007, Diversity overview,, viewed 5 July, 2010,

Seijts, G.H. 2006, Cases in organizational behavior, Beamish, PW (ed.), SAGE Publications, London,

Snell, S. & Bohlander, G. 2007, Human resource management, Thomson South-Western, USA,

William K.W. 2007, Globalization and workforce diversity: HRM implications for multinational corporations in Singapore, Singapore Management Review, viewed 28th June 2010,

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published.