One of the many benefits I enjoy from writing this column is that I get to stir stuff up from up here on my, shall we say, “perch.”From here, I get to rant and rave, sprinkle dashes of the uncomfortable into conventional wisdom and comfort zones, take folks dangerously close to the edge, leave them suspended Wile E. Coyote-like midair, then lasso them in before they plunge over the cliff into the “diversity dangers” that may lurk below. From here, I also get to do some vigorous backpedaling, or source attribution when I need to pass the buck if things get a tad too hot or have the potential to backfire on me.
A query by a general contractor whose workplace had been infected by racist comments was the topic of a recent article in The Houston Chronicle. At issue was the worker making these statements and, when confronted by another employee, getting very volatile (“almost violent”). The worker’s defended his statements by claiming the right of free speech. Since this is probably a common experience by many in the workplace, it’s fitting to ask how far does free speech go in what people say on the job in a public setting? The employer and boss has the right, in fact, is under the legal precedent of insuring that all workers can work in a safe environment free of racial discrimination and harassment. How does one resist this negative kind of hate speech, and interrupt this behavior from occurring?
Here are three no-cost, very simple diversity management practices you can begin today. You may think that these are so obvious, you don’t need to be told, but I want you to be aware of whether or not you practice these with people who are very different than you, or who you don’t know. It’s easy to greet the same people every day, however, I’m suggesting you move out of your comfort zone. You’ll rapidly notice your comfort zone expanding as well as employee participation and creativity.
25 Traits of a Diverse Organization:
1- Everyone is seen, as part of the organization’s diversity and the goal is to make everyone’s needs and concerns a part of the mainstream diversity effort.
Have you ever had difficulty understanding someone’s pronunciation, even if he or she knows how to speak English? It can be very frustrating for both the speaker and the listener.
We’re all fed up with the reported incidents of bullying that have been dominating the headlines lately. And we have every right to be. I just hope that we’ve reserved a portion of our dismay for the workplace bullies who may lurk in our midst wreaking havoc on folks in the next cubicle, lab or conference room, or yelling, screaming and cussing on the other end of the phone, or from another culture. And well we should because bullying is anathema to who we say we are from the duality of respectful and ethical behavior.
Still not convinced?
Inclusion-related policies and legal regulations have long been part of economic and social change, and, at times, part of emotional and combustible debate. Inclusion took 50 years of wrangling after the first Women’s Suffrage conference in the mid-1800s to achieve a constitutional amendment granting women the vote. It took another 50 years for the Civil Rights Movement to seriously impact the workplace and establishment of the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC). Almost 50 year later, we are seeing another major societal and economic transformation that questions the role of an inclusive diversity.