Benefits and Cost of Valuing Diversity

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Introduction

Diversity has many meanings. Within the workplace, it can include differences in variables such

as gender, age, marital status, religious belief, work experience, ethnicity, and educational background.

In today’s global marketplace, managers are told that diversity should be valued in order to achieve the

greatest competitive advantage, improve business performance and to enhance the progress and growth of the company. Diversity does not only have benefits. It also has disadvantages such as increasing conflicts, detrimental work behaviors and communication barriers.

Benefits of valuing diversity

A company with workers from different backgrounds should be valued because it has a wide variety of talents and has a competitive advantage over a homogeneous company. An analytical approach proposes that heterogeneous workers are likely to have non-redundant skills and perspective compared to workers in homogeneous organizations. (Roberge & Dick, 2010). A survey conducted by Centre for Strategy and Evaluation Services shows that companies with active diversity policies gained important benefits such as strengthened cultural values within organization, enhanced corporate reputation, attraction and retention of highly talented workers all of which strengthened long term competitiveness. (Lockett, 2003). Diversity should also be valued because when people with different perspectives and life experiences regardless of their ages, gender or backgrounds work together to attain a common goal. There is increase in productivity and improvement in business performance. A study published by an independent research centre(CREATE) in 2003 shows a more diverse workforce finds it easier to hire because there is a wide market to select from, creates access to new markets and overall improves business performance. Goldman Sachs published a report in 2007 that concluded that closing the...
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