Diversity climates vary in the degree to which individuals with different cultural and personal attributes are equally valued in an organization. An organization that encourages diversity through its practices and policies creates a favorable climate impacting a broad range of organizational attitudes, perceptions, and performance.
The purpose of the current study was to provide a “snapshot” of where the organizations are today in achieving the principles of diversity. Particularly, the study focused on four main diversity themes: Representation, Tolerance, Education and Training, and Diversity Outreach Initiatives. First, the study assessed the extent to which organizations are perceived as equally valuing minority groups. Second, the study examined the degree to which company management is perceived to be concerned with the needs of diverse groups as well as discouraging intolerant behaviors. Third, the study investigated the extent to which organizations promote diversity through education and training. Finally, the study assessed the extent to which diversity programs and policies are promoted.
A survey methodology was used in this study to identify these themes. A random sample of 176 individuals holding Human Resource positions in organizations representing a broad range of industries participated in this study. Participants completed a Diversity Questionnaire containing four scales, one focusing on each theme.
Preliminary results suggest that organization’s approach to diversity is particularly focused on compliance with the legal requirements regarding diversity issues. Efforts to incorporate diversity in the organizational culture seem to be limited even though such efforts contribute the most to perceiving the organization as equally valuing minority groups. More importantly, the Diversity Outreach Initiatives section received the lowest scores indicating that companies need to examine their relationships with the community they serve since it is these communities that provide the labor and the source of company revenue.
|Keywords:||Workplace, Diversity Climate, Organization, Community Outreach, Legal Compliance|
Associate Professor, Graduate Program in Human Resource Development, Villanova University, Villanova, PA, USA
Villanova University, USA
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