Diversity Management

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Management School 2012

Individual assignment for ULMS 794

29th April 2013

Content

Introduction4
M&S's background4
M&S's marketing concepts5
M&S's Diversity policy5
Conclusions and recommendations7
References8
Appendices8

The analysis of M&S’s Diversity policy

Introduction

This report gives a general introduction to M&S’s (Marks & Spencer) Diversity policy, dealing with different aspects in reality and ideally. With ample examples and illustrations comprising many specific points, I demonstrate my own argument on the outstanding features of M&S’s Diversity policy along with its inefficiencies.

The main body is divided into four parts: the first part introduces the background of M&S, together with some examples analyzing how M&S could successfully be accepted by the British people in such a short time, including the return policy, only selling British-made goods policy, etc. And then, some common classifications of M&S’s marketing concepts are discussed, including its mission statement, version and values. Thirdly, even though M&S’s Diversity policy seems to be satisfying enough, from my point of view, there are kinds of inadequacies remaining in it. For example, uncovered ratio of males and females, the unequal percentage of the top managers’ gender, etc. In the coming part, the conclusions and the resolutions of these inadequacies in M&S’s Diversity policy are discussed, which are completely based on my own understanding.

“The basic concept of Managing Diversity accepts that the workforce consists of a diverse population of people consisting of visible and non-visible differences including factors such as sex, age, background, race, disability, personality and work style and is founded on the premise that harnessing these differences will create a productive environment in which everyone feels valued, and where all talents are fully utilised and in which organisational goals are met.” (Kandola & Fullerton, 1998)

To fully exploit the potential of each employee and turn their unique working skills into business advantage, it is of great importance to manage diversity in workplace. By cultivating such diversity, it enhances team creativity,problem-solving, and innovation and consequently, is an elementary strategy for employers nowadays. To remain competitive, organisations would have to attract and recruit people from diverse groups of the population. Moreover, diversity enriches the workplace by enlarging employee perspectives, offering greater resources for problem resolution, and strengthening the teams.

Managing diversity is more than semantics. A much deeper significance lies in the social and economic effects of including hitherto marginalised people in work. (Maxwell, 2004) As a consequence, it is essential to study the fairness of the Diversity policy among a company.

M&S’s background

In 1884, M&S was founded by a partnership between Michael Marks from Slonim, and Thomas Spencer from Yorkshire in Leeds , which is a major British multinational retailer headquartered in the City of Westminster, London, with 703 stores in the United Kingdom and 361 stores spread across more than 40 countries.(Store Finder, 2011) In the next coming few years, they open market stalls in many locations around the North West of England. It specialises in the selling of clothing and luxury food products. In the early 20th century, M&S made its reputation on a policy of only selling British-made goods which discontinued in 2002. It built up long term relationships with British manufacturers, and sold food and clothes under the "St Michael" brand, which was introduced in 1928. The St Michael honours Michael Marks. It also accepted the return of unwanted items, giving a full cash refund if the receipt was shown, no matter how long ago the product was purchased, which was unusual for the time. (Chislett, 2009) It adopted a 90-day returns policy...
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