Diversity and Equality at Work

Capitalizing and maximizing on diversity has emerged as one of the fundamental requirements in organizations today. However, it is also realized that there must also be a certain level of equality existing in the diverse workforce in order to manage them successfully. Organizations are increasingly trying to impose equality among the diverse work culture with the view to maintain cohesiveness and collaboration. The project seeks to bring forth various arguments put forth by authors on the subject. This includes their views and suggestions regarding the various opportunities and challenges posed by equality and diversity at the workplace. The areas in which the authors are in agreement or disagreement on the subject are highlighted. Finally, the project concludes by summarizing on the core context spoken about in the literature. Critical Literature Opportunities and challenges of diversity at the workplace Researchers and practitioners’ views have been particularly favorable towards organizations upholding diversity in their culture. According to the views of Stephen, G. Butler, who is the co-chair of the Business-Higher Education Forum, diversity in organizations has the ability to yield higher competitive advantage and generate greater productivity. This is the reason why he has emphasized on the need for organizations to become ‘totally inclusive’ in nature and focus more on diversity issues. He has greatly emphasized on the American economy in this regard, saying that diversity is an asset that the country’s organizations possesses and must not ignore at any cost. He believes that valuing and managing diversity must form a key component of the nation’s organizations which could improve workplace productivity considerably (Green, Lopez, Wysocki, Kepner, 2008, p.2). According to Parvis (2003), with the increasing demands of the global competition and external changes organizations are focussing on redefining their diversity strategies. It is seen that organizations which are more diverse in terms of their culture and are better equipped to cater demands of a diverse workforce are in a better position to remain competitive in the market. However, regarding the ways in which organizations frame their diversity programs or manage diversity, Clemons and McLaughlin (2004) have claimed that diversity programs can only be effective if they are designed in such a way which assists employers in achieving organizational goals (Cunningham Green, 2007, p.2). The effectiveness of diversity programs necessarily depends on how organizations encourage and motivate their employees to work with others through interdependence and collaboration. According to the views of Esty et al., (1995), diversity can be beneficial for both employer and associates. Even though the associates remain interdependent at the workplace, respect towards their mutual differences can enhance productivity. The prevalence of diversity can reduce lawsuits and at the same time increase the chances of market opportunities, creativity, recruitment and the image of the business (Green, Lopez, Wysocki, Kepner, 2008, p.2).