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D I V E R S I T Y Time For Change America Can No Longer Ignore The Demographic Trends In The Society

1794 words - 8 pages

D I V E R S I T YTIME FOR CHANGEAn African- American executive say: "I am constantly on display and nothing I do is seen as an individual trail: I feel as if I have to represent all black people." A worker with a disability say: "I am often patronized, pitied, or treated like a child, but in fact, I am proud that I'm independent" An older employee say: "Younger colleagues think I don't know anything about the real world, just because I haven't heard of the latest rock star." "These are the "voices" of diversity the inner feeling of the people you work with every day who have a different racial background, gender, social culture, or lifestyle from yours. In today's highly diverse workplace, ...view middle of the document...

Yet, as one indicator of lingering disparities in diversity representation in the executive ranks, women are reported as holding only about 12.5 percent of corporate officerships in fortune 500 companies. They earn as senior executives only 72 cents to the dollar earned by the highest paid men with the black women trailing by percent 13 percent behind the white women" (CCOB pg 4,5). The consensus is that, although opportunities for minorities and women in the workplace increased substantially, they still face many barriers to career advancement.The expanded definition of diversity has not helped. "Women and Minorities are no longer the sole focus," says Lisbeth Claus, Professor of human resource management at the Fisher Graduate School of International Business in Monterey, California. "Workplace diversity now goes beyond gender and race to include age, disabilities, family structure, sexual orientation, ethnic culture and religious affiliation (The Wall Street Journal, 2002)." As stated by the authors of " Organizational Behavior" "between 1990 and 2005, about 50 percent of the new entrants to the labor force will be women and racial and ethnic groups such as African Americans, Latinos, and Asians. At the same time, those 55 and older are projected to make up nearly 15 percent of the labor force" (CCOB pg 50). It is growing ever more essential for people to interact with others outside of their racial, ethical, religious, regional, and social boundaries. To stay on top of competitors, especially in the 21st century and going forward, companies must change their approach, and see diversity not as a necessaryevil or a mere threat, but as a source of enrichment and opportunity that may bring a wealth of benefits to the company.If you investigate U.S. corporations especially management positions, it is evident that minorities are under represented. The reasons behind this seem to vary depending on whose point of view you look at. Some argue that minorities "have not been in the labor pool long enough to work "their way" up" (JALMC, 2002). It would be ridiculous to believe this, because there are plenty of qualified minorities for any of those jobs. Others argue, "Minority employees do not know the rules that allow one to 'win' in the corporate game" (JALMC, 2002). If this is true, then what is keeping them from learning these rules and what can be done to teach?It is my experience that there is an inherit distrust on the part of today's managers (typically white males who grew up with little exposure to people from other cultures) in the abilities of others outside of the white, male work force. "At the time, many of today's leading managers, or CEOs were in school, they were taught, that blacks had smaller brains than whites and that women were not as smart and were overly emotional. The attitudes and beliefs of such training have undoubtedly influenced these men (Sappal, 2002). It seems that the younger executives coming in now are even worse;...

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