Cultural Diversity and Employee Morale

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ASSESSING THE IMPACT OF CULTURAL DIVERSITY ON EMPLOYEE MORALE WITHIN INTERNATIONAL ORGANIZATIONS

CASE OF INTERNATIONAL CRIMINAL TRIBUNAL FOR RWANDA (ICTR)

BY

CHARLOTTE URUKUNDO (23HQ 11350)

This paper was submitted in the partial fulfilment of the requirements for the award of

Master Degree in Business Administration

Awarded by

EASTERN AND SOUTHERN AFRICA& THE MAASTRICH SCHOOL
MANAGEMENT INSTITUTE (ESAMI)OF MANAGEMENT (MSM)

P.O BOX 3030P.O. Box 1203
ARUSHA TANZANIA6201 BE Maastricht
NETHERLANDS

NOVEMBER 2012

Background to the Study

The cultural diversity is actually an unescapable reality that is the consequence of more interaction among people from diverse cultures, beliefs, and backgrounds in search for the most rewarding jobs to fulfill their utmost needs of well being. Many researchers have shown that, due to the increasing globalization, the workforce diversity is an opportunity for many organizations to be effective in operating worldwide; but on the other hand, diversity may creates challenges since different people thinking and acting differently are exposed to common problems which demand cooperation for their solution.

Employee commitment and alignment to the achievement of organizational goals are good indicators of the extent to which they feel valued for their contribution to organizational orientation; therefore, managing the workforce diversity in its entire dimension is the cornerstone of organizational performance which enhances workplace productivity.

Managing diversity can enhance employees’ morale which is defined as the description of the emotions, attitude, satisfaction and overall outlook of employees during their time in a workplace environment (Business dictionary.com ). Generally, increased employee morale means a happier, more productive and higher performing employee.

The United Nation’s and other International Agencies are acknowledged institutions where diversity is a core value to be respected; employees with different cultural background and a variety of nationalities work and are brought together by the organizational culture under the human resources strategies and instruments. Maximizing and capitalizing on diverse workforce is an important issue for management within international organizations due to their worldwide openness; thus, how does a Human resource department accommodate an environment that is so fragmented? How can a HR manager unite such a diverse and disparate workforce to effectively get the unlimited advantages? How far are employee aware of cultural diversity and how do they commit themselves on organizational goals achievements? How does culture ties impacts on employee morale within organizations? Those are the questions that make the foundation of our research.

Our research will focus on cultural diversity within ICTR and will examine the extent to which cultural diversity affect employee morale and the organizational performance as well.

1 Statement of the problem

Many organizations worldwide are grappling with the opportunities and challenges of working with diversity; while it has the potential to strengthen organizational effectiveness and efficiency and to advance social justice, experiences has shown that realizing the full benefits of diversity is not a simple or straightforward process (Deborah M. Sands & All, 2000). The ICTR being UN mission, has Respect for diversity as a core value and our interest is motivated by the fact that it has a diverse workforce of more than 50 nationalities comprising of different races, tribes, culture, religious beliefs, gender mix, age and different conceptions. Though it is quite challenging to accommodate such a diverse and disparate constituency, the ICTR management has the hard task of protecting the organization from...
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