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Discussion Response 1a and 1b:
Course title: Managing Organizational Diversity
Book used for this course: Mor Barak, Managing Diversity: Toward a Globally Inclusive
Workplace, 4 th Edition, Publisher Sage, ISBN: 9781483386126
write a 150-200-word, substantive response post to the initial posts listed below. Your response
posts should cite at least two (2) qualified sources. The topic of discussion is (As a result of
increased heterogeneity in the workforce many organizations must find ways to deal with
new organizational dynamics due to hostile intergroup relations, a major issue
confronting most organizations dealing with increasing heterogeneity. How can
employers focus on eliminating hostile intergroup relations and create an inclusive, healthier,
and pluralistic work environment?) (Chapter 1 Mor Barak, Managing Diversity: Toward a
Globally Inclusive Workplace, 4 th Edition, Publisher Sage, ISBN: 9781483386126)
In recent years, organizations have established a trend of broadening their employee
base to foster a more diverse and heterogeneous workforce (Mor Barak, 2017).
Workplace diversity brings many wonderful benefits, such as innovation, creativity, and
perspective. However, a heterogeneous workforce can also lead toe challenges,
particularly if the organization has not had a diverse workforce, historically. One such
challenge is intergroup hostility. Individuals tend to feel most comfortable when
interacting with others of similar backgrounds (Mor Barak, 2017). Sometimes,
discomfort with new individuals can manifest itself as hostility.
One way firms can combat such hostility is through establishing policies that prohibit
discrimination or harassment (Mor Barak, 2017). Leadership should remain vigilant and
monitor for discriminatory or harassing behavior. Additionally, the company should
establish a mechanism through which employees can report concerns, should an issue
arise. By setting and actively enforcing clear policies that make it clear poor behavior
will not be tolerated, the organization helps to establish a culture of inclusivity.
Another way organizations can combat hostility is through good communication
practices (Shaban, 2016). Establishing a communication plan that is relevant and
includes all members of a diverse workforce helps to align expectations and reduce
misunderstanding that could result in conflict. This communication plan pertains not only
to information leadership disseminates to staff, but also should include a way for all staff
to feel comfortable voicing their own opinions or concerns. Doing so creates a culture
where all members of staff feel included, valued, and hears.
In my personal experience, my current employer hosts diversity training session. We
are a large healthcare institution affiliated with a state university. Our workforce is both
very large and very diverse. To help foster a better understanding of workforce culture,
our HR department offers regular in-person and video sessions to raise cultural
awareness. These sessions also outline behavioral expectations and policy sanctions
for misbehavior. These sessions have helped to both combat inter-employee conflict
and to improve patient relations.
Mor Barak, M. (2017). Managing diversity: Toward a globally inclusive workplace.
(4 th ed.). Los Angeles: Sage.
Shaban, A. (2016). Managing and leading a diverse workforce: One of the main
challenges in management. Procedia Social and Behavioral Sciences, 230(2016), 76-
The field of diversity management is a complex, dynamic, and developing subject.
Whether a company is small, large, or global, the components of fostering diversity and
eliminating hostile intergroup relations go far beyond simply using affirmative action to
introduce and enforce diversity guidelines.
Effective managers that find success in creating inclusive and healthy work
environments must find a balance of skills. These managers must be inventive and
original, they must respect the dignity of the employees, they must have good
judgement and they must strive to make the business profitable with an awareness of
the business’s responsibility to the wider community. (Barak, 2017.)
Barak (2017) reports that studies have shown that inclusion of employees in structural
networks and in decision making processes is correlated to better job opportunities and
career advancement, among many other positive and healthy job aspects. This view is
in opposition to an exclusionary workplace style that demands that employees conform
to the organizational values.
The inclusive workplace model respects varied cultural perspectives, is aware of how
the business affects the community, tries to employ disadvantaged groups from the
community, and collaborates with global partners. All of these tactics have been shown
to have lower turnover, higher productivity, increased bottom line, and other benefits.
These inclusive workplace methods contrast with affirmative action types of programs
which may not be the best option. Ramos, Hewstone, Barreto, & Branscombe (2016)
found these programs were associated with decreased cooperation, poor reviews of
leaders, and are seen as being less socially equal.
Mor-Barak Michàlle E. (2017). Managing diversity: toward a globally inclusive
workplace (4th ed.). SAGE.
Ramos, M. R., Hewstone, M., Barreto, M., & Branscombe, N. R. (2016). The
opportunities and challenges of diversity: explaining its impact on individuals and
groups: the opportunities and challenges of diversity. European Journal of Social
Psychology, 46(7), 793–806. https://doi.org/10.1002/ejsp.2261