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Tackling Workplace Discrimination

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Tackling Workplace Discrimination

Introduction

The globalization of markets and digitization of employment structures develop a difference in the internal and external structures. Barak (2019, p. 48) indicates that the rise of digitization and empowerment of different ethnicities develops a demographic challenge to organizations. The minorities and women have been noticed to gain considerable expertise in the employment sector, necessitating their involvement in equal employment. Additionally, with the constant empowerment of the general population, scholars, governments, and other humanitarian organizations insist on increasing diversity to develop productivity. On the contrary, the development of diversity within the employment structure leads to challenges in managing the workforce. It can be determined that with increased diversity, ethnicities, and orientations in the workplace, different employees demand a specific type of tolerance. Categorization of the employees’ conditions discrimination in the workplace. The extents of discrimination have been reported by Shen, Chanda & D’netto (2013, p. 235) as affected by social-cultural factors such as gender, age, race, and ethnicity. For instance, an employee can be denied the same opportunity of promotion due to their cultural differences. Therefore, the management of discrimination would require different organizations to pay interest to diversity and inclusion policies.

Diversity and Inclusion in the Workplace

Globalization and the development of markets have drastically changed the external and internal structures of organizations. These changes have altered the world of work, necessitating a change in the management of employees. As provided by Shore, Randel & Chung (2011, p. 1271), the article suggests that organizations have to develop policies of inclusivity and diversity in their recruitment and selection. The article supports diversity by mentioning that it inspires productivity, innovativeness, and creativity. Different policies and attribution of equality, inclusivity, and diversity Sharma (2016, p. 1212682) report that different organizations fail to establish a balance in their internal structures. Globalization and the development of the market lead to unfair discrimination, bias, and injustice among the employees. This paper will address the different approaches to tackling unfair discrimination in the workplace. However, to present the findings, the study will focus on the impacts of performance appraisals, legal compliance of the organization, socio-cultural issues, and workplace capabilities outlined by industrial guidelines. Tackling unfair discrimination requires the organization to understand how it happens in practice.

Literature Review

Globalization of markets and economies forces structural and demographic changes to the structure of employment. Tatli (2011, p. 239) mentions that employers, governments, and scholars for more than a decade have developed a keen focus on inclusivity policies as a measure of countering market changes. Diversity of the workforce is also explained by Sharma (2016, p. 1212682) incorporating different and diverse individuals in the workplace. Ideally, it works by combining individuals with different beliefs, unique cultures, aspirations, expectations, and orientations. Contrary to the established advantage of diversity in the workplace, it can be deduced that employees with different expectations and backgrounds feel the need to be respected. It poses a challenge for the human resource team and management, often leading to the rise of tensions and conflict. The organization is faced with the challenge of developing policies of inclusivity and openness among the employees.

Maintaining workplace coordination is important for any organization as it helps to increase productivity, general responsiveness of employees and reduce turnovers and legal sanctions. Typically, managers worldwide have been recorded by Shen et al, (2013, p. 245) to develop equality policies by avoiding categorization. This is achieved by avoiding the ‘us’ versus ‘them’ categorization and comments amongst the employees. As such, the terms diversity and equality have become two cross-referenced policies among organizations in the world. Equity and Diversity in the workplace are known ideologies of reducing discrimination. However, the two terms are separate items. The term ‘equality’ references tolerance, rights, laws, and policies associated with increasing the minority and women in senior positions. On the other hand, diversity is an organizational initiative focused on valuing individual differences and values. Conclusively, workplace coordination is a factor of increasing diversity and equal opportunities to reduce discrimination and bias treatment of employees.

Tackling discrimination in the workplace will require different organizations to develop diversity management and equality measures. As established in the study by Barak (2019, p. 53), it confirms that the organizational plan of developing diversity is the centerpiece of negativity when not properly managed. In this reference, the article addresses the negative impacts of diversity and unfairness within the organization. As such, discrimination in the organization is instigated through a lack of gender-friendly initiatives. Many organizations fail to attain at least two-thirds gender rule, and the top management is filled with men. Therefore, diversity management policies regardless of the position of every individual respective of their orientation, beliefs, and religion. Additionally, the management of workplace discrimination has been outlined in different legislative documents. For instance, the racial and sexual discrimination act necessitates the employer to recruit different genders and avoid sexual harassment.

Effective management of the employees requires a culture of inclusivity and equity in a work environment. An inclusive workplace nurtures talent, cohesiveness, teamwork, and participation in the general organization objective. A study by Shen et al, (2013, p. 239) analyzing five hundred and twelve organizations found out that formalizing the workplace helps to reduce the number of men in management positions. It regards equity, equality, and inclusivity to follow the same law and practice of hiring, accountability, and firing. Sharma (2016, p. 1212682) suggests that to measure policies of inclusivity and diversity, the organization ought to evaluate their work profile in the given industry, organizational cultures, job satisfaction levels among employees, and the opinion of outside sources regarding the business. Ideally, an evaluation of the business helps integrates the different cultural boundaries and hindrances in the organization.

Managing diversity is equally important in the organization as it impacts every stakeholder and shareholder within the business structure. The external environment is affected by the business profile. A positive business profile attracts shareholders to the business, increasing their participation in the global market. At the same time, proper management of discrimination and diversity within the business affects employee productivity. It provides the business with a conducive environment where the employees are trained on being productive, positively competitive and increasing the opportunities for growth within the business structure. Shore et al, (2011, p. 1273) describes a scenario of a multicultural organization focused on a planned approach to managing discrimination. The study reinstates that the planned approach of management of diversity and inclusivity enables the business to be competitive while attracting employment opportunities. On the contrary, a pluralist approach of diversity management regards diversity as a public relations concept contrary to the employees’ productivity. The findings of the study guides that diversity and management should reflect the core values and culture within an organization. 

Presentation of Data and Findings

The literature on the management of diversity and inclusivity has been picked from various organizations and industries. It gives insights into the foundation of diversity, inclusivity, and discrimination within a working structure. Workplace inclusivity celebrates different milestones on the achievement of an organization in terms of key performance appraisals. On the other hand, it distracts the intent of the organization and the policies developed against discrimination. It regards that as the organization is tied to different instances of productivity and innovativeness, it denies the employee a conducive environment for growth. Shore et al, (2011, p. 1276) suggests that organizations are tied to the idea that diversity develops productivity to the extent that it develops a culture of competition. The idea that the minority are not well represented increases their efforts in the general organizational objective. However, it reduces the productivity of the majority group as they instigate the idea that the minority will accomplish the given tasks and take the credit as well. The data on inclusivity and diversity within the organization has been analyzed based on different responses to cultures of productivity.

The findings by Salway, Mir & Turner (2016, p. 106) suggests that workplace diversity is a component of employee age, gender, social status, marital status, sexual orientation, ethnicity, culture, and religious belief. The presentation confirms that diversity issues are a key concern to different organizations in the United States of America, South Africa, and the European Union. It is persistent that regions of demographic diversity have to develop inclusivity measures that support the business profile. Barak (2019, p. 59) argue that multiculturalism has always been a vital component for diversity, especially where racial equality appears to be a dominant preposition of society. This paper looks to analyze frameworks of diversity as a tool for managing discrimination. Shen et al, (2013, p. 248) discusses that there is no single measure that can be used to analyze diversity and inclusivity in the workplace. This study will draw on four aspects of diversity in the workplace; performance appraisal, social-cultural issues, affirmative approach, and organizational capabilities. A meta-analysis of different scholarly sources has collected data presented in this study. Additionally, the study has utilized the application of organizational data on the management of employees.

Performance Appraisal

The conduct of performance appraisal is attained to enhance managerial and organizational performance alongside employee motivation. Tatli (2011, p. 247) discuss that the origin and nature of performance appraisals are to establish cultures of potential bias and discrimination within an organization. It points to the idea that the organization should not be focused on the general outcome such as employee productivity and revenue earned. It also establishes the foundations of a conducive environment that support employees to achieve the objectives of the business. Shore et al, (2011, p. 1278) documents the findings that based on the performance appraisal of 40 organizations, Asians and women in the United States of America are put at disadvantaged positions. Additionally, the study indicates that gender diversity increases group participation and communication within the organization. Sabharwal (2014, p. 225) contradicts the positive impact of racial diversity by establishing that it inhibits the productivity of the minority in dominant cultural organizations. Performance appraisals indicate that disparities and unfairness within an organization are instigated by performance evaluation. It is the principle that performance is measured by the overall outcome while ignoring other efforts such as communication and teamwork. Other forms of disparities within the organization performance appraisals include; stereotyping, double standards, and high expectations.

Social-cultural Approaches of the Organization

Cultural diversity is a key component to the sustainability of a business within the practice. It gives the idea that a business has to develop distinctive functions and activities aimed at human resource development. As such, this study will present the findings on social-cultural issues of diversity within the practice. As indicated by Sharma (2016, p. 1212682), the article has developed models of social-cultural diversity popularly known as the cultural fit. It outlines the acceptable culture within an organization and how it impacts employee participation in the organizational objective. Prominent dimensions within the social-cultural spectrum include; power distance, masculinity, language, gender, religion, short and long-term orientation. For instance, paternalistic leadership accounts for authority and discipline within an organization giving little room for errors. Therefore, within an organizational culture where the employee does not conform to the said power structures, it leads to failures in developing a cultural fit (Sabharwal 2014, p. 199). Therefore, the extent of inequality and discrimination is widely given by the power distance, orientation, and beliefs of an individual relative to the general culture of the organization.

Affirmative Action

Managing equality and diversity within an organization is centered majorly on core values and balance between men and women. Equally, women’s labor participation has led to structural changes in the economic market. As such, different countries are mandated to work within the limits of laws that address these challenges. Different organizations in America are subjected to laws on gender discrimination during recruitment, redundancy, flexible working, maternity leaves, and part-time work. These laws are known as affirmative actions and have been developed by different governments and industries to address gender equality, diversity, and inclusion within the workplace. According to Sharma (2016, p. 1212682),

“AA is a set of techniques for rectifying discrimination which consist mainly of forcing personnel systems to become more objective and to eliminate preferences built in not viciously but because the way the society was organized.”

Capabilities Approach of Managing Diversity

The capabilities approach is discussed on the perspective of freedom and opportunities accorded to different individuals. Therefore, the capability model addresses the problem of gender inequality within an organization and the laws developed to attain fair treatment of all employees. Salway et al, (2016, p. 109) develops rationality that organizations, governments and other institutions favor diversity and inclusivity as it leads to competitiveness of the business. At the external market, the development of diversity and inclusivity offers a business competitive advantages in the market. It makes capabilities approach a systemic application that allows organizations and market players to conform to the industrial set standard. Therefore, capabilities are given as the internal capacity, industrial capacity and a combination of the two capabilities. The internal capacity of the business accords individuals with the basic requirements of achieving advanced capabilities. In relation to management of discrimination, the capabilities approach regards the required laws and practice required to provide an individual with the correct opportunity of growth.

Discussions on Management of Diversity and Inclusion

The conditions of bias, unfairness, and discrimination have been persistent among different American economic organizations. Similarly, challenges of discrimination, diversity, and inclusion continue to present among other organizations globally. These challenges have been known to affect the minority. For instance, in the United States of America, discrimination has been discussed by Salway et al, (2016, p. 110) to affect blacks and other groups of the minority. It is clearly defined that performance appraisal measures are discriminative and biased towards gender, race, and ethnicity. A manager is bound to be biased because the orientation of the employee differs from theirs. This phenomenon has been addressed by Tatli (2011, p. 251) indicating that blacks, minority face challenges in performance appraisals. Performance appraisals are influenced by factors such as stereotypes, orientations, expectations, and double standards. Additionally, discrimination is also persistent among companies since they fail to audit or train managers in being effective at their roles. This instigates bias in operation as the employers, through the managers, continue to oversee a specific group of employees.

Performance appraisal literature confirms that it enhances discrimination within the organization. Additionally, the perception of employees regarding appraisal differs among the different organizations. It confirms the biased nature of performance appraisal, instigating that businesses should adopt multiple rating scales and assign metrics to different scales. Applying a multiple-scale system will help reduce employee turnover while developing a culture of fairness and accountability. Regardless of the system adopted for performance appraisal study by Sharma (2016, p. 1212682) develops the hypothesis that other factors such as culture, power distance, organizational policies, gender, sex, and religion play key roles in employee motivation to the general objective of the business. The socio-cultural approach of managing diversity indicates that different factors such as power structures, orientation, religion, gender, and age significantly affect discrimination. For instance, an older person receiving instructions from a younger person is considered inappropriate. The same effect is witnessed in service careers where age develops a rift between newcomers and the experienced generations. Salway et al, (2016, p. 111) finds that experienced nurses fail to take instructions from recently educated nurses. The perception and justification of these systems of discrimination are that having experience equates to professional care. Additionally, recent graduates fail to integrate into the new work system, suggesting that they receive resentment from their colleagues.

Conclusions

The concept of discrimination within the workplace is not a new term, and as reviewed, it is evident that it is evolving through time and place. The existence of discrimination in the workplace suggests a lack of incentive among different industries, organizations, and employers. It can be determined that a difference between the orientation of employees affects their relation to one another. Different elements of conflict are instigated by the idea that employees often categorize themselves in the workplace. Additionally, the employer and the organization fail to provide conducive environments for the employees. For instance, different organizations stress the promotion of men as opposed to women in leadership positions. Discrimination in the workplace occurs due to self-instigated values, cultural differences, religious orientations, political beliefs, ethnicity, age, race, and gender. Tackling organizational discrimination requires the key industrial player to effectively manage diversity and equality. This is the idea of providing employees with equal regards, policies, opportunities, and representation within an organization. Conclusively, the organization can achieve harmony by effectively managing performance appraisal, socio-cultural issues and developing effective laws regarding employment. An organization can attain gender equality and balance by reducing stereotypes, increasing women recruitment, and providing equal growth opportunities. The study concludes that management of discrimination can be achieved through positive management of diversity and inclusion in the workplace. 

List-of-References

Barak, M.E.M., 2019. Beyond affirmative action: Toward a model of diversity and organizational inclusion. Administration in Social Work23(3-4), pp.47-68.

Sabharwal, M., 2014. Is diversity management sufficient? Organizational inclusion to further performance. Public Personnel Management43(2), pp.197-217.

Salway, S., Mir, G., Turner, D., Ellison, G.T., Carter, L. and Gerrish, K., 2016. Obstacles to “race equality” in the English National Health Service: Insights from the healthcare commissioning arena. Social Science & Medicine152, pp.102-110.

Sharma, A., 2016. Managing diversity and equality in the workplace. Cogent Business & Management3(1), p.1212682.

Shen, J., Chanda, A., D’netto, B. and Monga, M., 2013. Managing diversity through human resource management: An international perspective and conceptual framework. The International Journal of Human Resource Management20(2), pp.235-251.

Shore, L.M., Randel, A.E., Chung, B.G., Dean, M.A., Holcombe Ehrhart, K. and Singh, G., 2011. Inclusion and diversity in work groups: A review and model for future research. Journal of management37(4), pp.1262-1289.

Tatli, A., 2011. A multi‐layered exploration of the diversity management field: diversity discourses, practices and practitioners in the UK. British Journal of Management22(2), pp.238-253.

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