February 8, 2011
The article I choose is “Redefining Diversity” by Roosevelt R. Thomas. This is a good article because the author explains that diversity is not just differences in age, race, gender, etc. but also includes similarities in groups and functions. The author states that diversity is the collective mixture of differences and similarities, which managers should learn to recognize (Thomas, 2002). Diversity should focus on the big picture instead of a piece of it because one decision could affect different functions and employees of an organization.
Thomas (2002) discusses a four-step process for diversity management that includes get clear on the problem, analyze the diversity mixture, check for diversity tension, and review action plans. Get clear on the problem involves identifying the problem clearly without pre-judgments or personal biases (Thomas, 2002). I see this at my job at Coca-Cola because employees tend to jump to conclusions when a customer complaint is made. For example, a salesperson will blame the problem on the merchandiser or the merchandiser will blame the problem on the sales person. Words are said without identifying the root cause of the problem, which can turn into negative conflict for the team.
Analyze the diversity mixture explains to identify the set of circumstances that are involved in the situation (Thomas, 2002). In my job I deal with service allocation for customers, which is determined on volume sold by the sales department. When I have to cut service from accounts because the plant is not going to meet volume goals, there are frustrating discussions with the sales team. The sales team sometimes takes this personal because they only see their customer not being serviced. They do not look at the big picture where there are budget objectives that need to be made by the merchandising team. Check for diversity tension refers to the... [continues]
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