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Workplace Diversity Can Be Linked To Schools

Mar 6, 2008
It is always interesting to view the amount of attention which is placed on workplace and cultural diversity in today's global workplace. The reason of course is clear when you consider that companies are in the pursuit of selling their goods and services to any race, creed or colour. If a company is seen to be discriminating against a particular dimension of diversity (this is readily defined as Race, Sex, Skin Colour, Sexual Orientation and the list can go on) then the distinct possibility may come to the fore where that company may be boycotted and lose out on massive revenue generation that may be taken in by the company from a particular group.

Workplace Diversity is where we see the ugly issues of diversity come to the fore, we see individuals with great talents who are not being used within organizations due to the ignorance and prejudices of shortsighted management teams.

The point to be addressed within this short article is, where does it all start ? well all managers grow up somewhere and go through the schooling system and are 'programmed' by their environments, school teachers and companions. There is a worrying trend which I have seen where individuals with responsibilities for schooling children and youth come from background which do not prepare them for dealing with the wide range of background that they may be faced with during their teaching activities.

It has been seen that individuals have been seen to be expelled from various educational institutions where; upon closer inspection it may well be found that the youth are losing out from quality education and instruction and find themselves outside of educational institutions due to the fact that the individuals in charge have not been equipped with dealing with the youth under their care. Due to the structure of the organizations it is rare that the spotlight is turned on the individuals in charge but the youth under their care find themselves outside of mainstream education.

What can be done to shed more light on these sequence of events ? we can start by bringing diversity education into the schools and educational institutions so that individuals are aware of and versed in this critical topic before they enter the workplace.

Much money is being spend on Diversity Consultants because high level management understand the link between performance, diversity and the bottom revenue generating line of a given company. If you take a school with middle class teachers, middle class pupils who go through the educational system then straight on to university and then in many cases straight on into management trainee positions; you see that they are the ones who end up leading within our corporations. Often they are faced with people from various cultures and persuasions and are not equipped to deal with the mannerisms, mode of encouragement and the general skills to deal with people of a particular ethnic background.

The management may interpret they way an individual expresses himself as not being enthusiastic where in fact this may be due to the way a particular culture expresses themselves. Yes you can throw management through various cultural diversity and workplace diversity training programs which will undoubtedly help however, would it not be so much better if they believed in cultural diversity from within their heart's which was based upon an experience of actually dealing with and 'touching' individuals from the different dimensions of diversity during their formative years.
About the Author
Stephen C Campbell MBA, MSc Is A (Black) Business Consultant from the UK who has lived and managed in the Far East, helped to devise Diversity programs in the U.S. the Far East and Europe. He can be contacted and hired via http://www.StephenCCampbell.Com/
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