February 19th, 2010
“The Effects of Diversity on Business Performance: Report of the Diversity Research Network”
Article Critique #1
In this article the Business Opportunities for Leadership Diversity (BOLD), The Alfred P. Sloan Foundation, and the Society of Human Resource Management (SHRM) Foundation came together to examine the effects diversity has on a business and the business’s performance.
I agree with the article in that diversity can have a positive and/or negative effect on businesses and their performances. In many ways diversity can be a positive influence on companies and company performances because diversity allows for creativity, challenging others’ ideas, and avoidance of “group think”. Diversity in business can allow for a wide range of competitive moves from new ideas and differences in cultures. The better the range of knowledge and skill the more innovative and creative employees typically are in organizations.
On the other hand diversity can be a major negative effect on business in that it can cause barriers to communication between employees. Employees that cannot communicate with one another do not work well together; many times become confrontational with each other, and many times are not working towards the same goals because of misperceptions. There may be a language barrier, a culture barrier, a religion issue, or even a knowledge or skill difference that makes working as a team less successful.
The sample the organizations were able to obtain in the study, used as a base for this report, was a small sample size but I think that the study was very conclusive. In most situations people from a different background will bring new ideas and compete with each other to create a competitive advantage. Yet, if you put a group of people together that do not understand one another the communication will be difficult which may lead to confusion, frustration, or no communication at...