Cultural Diversity Essay

1724 words - 7 pages

The face of the business world is global. This globalization has led to business leaders examining the need to address the complex issue of diversity in the workplace and how to use diversity as a competitive advantage. Unfortunately, not all companies are addressing diversity with the same passion as others. What are the best practices that have been utilized by leaders in diversity? According to Waller Vallario, there are seven best practices for valuing diversity within the workplace (2006, p.51). This paper will review five of the seven best practices as well highlight some of the corporate leaders who have implemented these best practices. Finally, it will evaluate the writer's current organization based on these best practices and offer recommendations for converting existing practices to one or more of the best practices found within this paper's research.It is proposed that the potentially constructive or destructive impact of diversity accepted in the workplace starts at the executive level of an organization. Diversity programs need to be a reflection of the organizational culture. The programs need to recognize and appreciate differences in the members of the workforce and appreciate their contribution to the organization's overall business strategy (Williams, 2007, p. 14). Cultural diversity reflects the unique sets of values, beliefs, attitudes, and expectations, which leads a company to focus on the needs of employees.Food Lion, LLC, has been recognized for making their employees feel valued through their diversity program. Eric Watson, vice president of diversity for Food Lion, says "diversity has a direct impact on their bottom line" (Williams, 2007, p. 14). That is why Food Lion offers a variety of opportunities to their associates to be active participants in diversity efforts and training. From encouraging their associates to get involved in community events focused on diverse groups or hosting a diversity summit meeting for their managers to have business resource groups which represent a variety of diversity groups such as: African-American, Hispanic, female, gay, lesbian - each group having a mission and purpose to guide the company in engaging their employees and customers for a competitive advantage.As mentioned previously, diversity initiatives should start at the CEO level; from there the goals need to be communicated to each level of the organization. According to Layne, communications should be frequent and consistent across the organization (2002, p. 30). Corporate leaders also take the communication outside the organization to the marketplace and community. This communication can prove to be critical during the hiring process and can deliver a message as an employer of choice (Hunter, 2007, p. 13).Competitive Advantage is about being the best, the leader, in the market place at any given time and to beat the competition at their own game. It also means being the first choice for a customer or consumer and that the...

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