Deutsche Bank Blogging Challenge – November entries close 30 November
Our challenge question for October received some strong views on the banking industry and its efforts to restore society’s trust. Congratulations to Judy from NUS in Singapore for her winning post.
This month we’re looking for your thoughts on workplace diversity. What does diversity mean to you, and what contribution does a diverse workforce make to the successful performance of a business?
It’s your opportunity to tell us your thoughts and show your agile mind. Post your thoughts and gather votes from your friends for the chance to win tickets to a performance of your choice!
Visit dbbloggingchallenge.com to get your entry in today.
To give you some ideas on what your blog could look like, the GradConnection team have put together a blog on this months topic ourselves which you can read below, hope it helps and good luck blogging.
Diversity in the workplace
Diversity is inescapable. We exist in a world that contains an infinite number of stimuli, and we each react differently to those stimuli as individuals, based on our experiences, tolerances, personalities, environments and motivations. These reactions and responses make us unique, and so the social ecosystem in which we operate becomes a constellation of influences, based on those we surround ourselves with. We are exposed to new ideas, new viewpoints and new interactions by being exposed to people who are either more like us or less like us.
This has a big impact on business and workplace culture. Diversity, whether it is of gender, race, attitude or experience, creates an environment where ideological collisions are inevitable. Each person we meet brings with them a world more complex and drenched in experience than we can ever imagine, and when we collide with these worlds, neither party will ever be the same. Diversity creates dramatic contrasts, and these contrasts serve to strengthen us in a number of ways.
One of the most observable results of diversity in a culture is the increase in tolerance and positive behaviour. When humans create a cultural template and avoid diversity, an ‘us vs them’ social response is created. We create a tribal identity that fiercely excludes anyone who is different. By comparison, diverse collections of people tend to be more accepting, more able to see benefits in new ideas from others, and less antagonistic towards new additions to the culture. Diversity, by benefit of contrast, breeds the ability to see beyond one’s own world view, and take in a larger image of any situation or issue.
Diversity also allows organisations to recognise individual strengths and weaknesses more easily, and employ individuals more effectively when it comes to tasks. The contrast created by a wide spectrum of people and skills creates a level basis for comparison, which allows the peaks and troughs of people’s abilities to be easily identifiable against the organisational average.
However, diversity can be challenging for organisations that have an anecdotal bias towards a specific type of leader. For example, a corporate culture that is driven by a group of similar leaders can perceive this leader type as the template for success, rather than looking at why these leaders have made it to the top. As a result, leaders who do not match the historical template can opt out of the culture, or fail to make an impact in the organisation. Diversity requires more than just having different people – it requires an equality and open mind when it comes to recognising how those people’s talents can be harnessed for the good of the organisation.
Broader diversity – of race, gender, experience, attitude and aptitude – can clearly benefit an organisation that is able to harness the skills and experiences its people. As we move toward a more global workforce, exposure to a greater degree of ethnic and gender diversity is inescapable. And companies that adapt well to this shift, and use this contrast and constellation of new ideas to solve complex problems and drive business outcomes will thrive.