Peer Reviewed Journal Articles





Peer Reviewed Journal Articles

            Work place discrimination is a contentious issue at the work place. People are discriminated because of factors such as ethnicity, gender or religion among others. One of the reasons why people discriminate against others is the feeling of superiority complex. Some people believe that belonging to one group, such as being white or male, is better or more superior than belonging to other groups, such as being female or African American. Crisis, such as acts of terror associated with a particular group, can also contribute to discrimination. For instance, the events that happened after the terrorist attacks in September 2001 changed many people’s view concerning Islam and Muslims in general. Many Muslims were discriminated against after the attacks (Kaifi et al., 2009). Some of the discriminatory practices include low pay and poor working conditions. In some cases, the minorities receive a significantly lower pay than the people belonging to the majority do yet they have the same qualifications and they have the same level of experience (DelCampo et al., 2011).

The government has enacted laws to ensure that people manage diversity at the work place. Despite the severe penalties enacted for disregarding or breaking the law, some people continue to discriminate those who are different from them. They are largely influenced by misinformation concerning a particular group and their stereotypical opinions. They do not realize that the organization can benefit from diversity. Although the government and management in many organizations have taken an active role in ensuring that everybody is treated fairly in the organization, appreciation of individual differences is often a personal matter. A person’s opinions towards others will affect their opinion and behavior towards them. Some people have high personal values concerning diversity, and strongly oppose discrimination. People will react to diversity based on their idea of justice and their moral values (Triana et al., 2011).

Many organizations are nowadays looking for employees who have different backgrounds. They want people who can understand different languages and religions (Kaifi et al., 2009). They are going to considerable lengths to ensure that their organizations are diverse in every respect. Some organizations hire diversity consultants, offer training programs to their employees to help them understand diversity, and they start diversity initiatives (Stevens et al., 2008). Diversity influences the way people work, especially in groups. Some people suggest that increasing the number of the underrepresented group in a particular work group will lead to a better understanding, and will improve the efficiency of the group (Ely & Thomas, 2001). Diversity should be seen as strength and an opportunity for the organizations, rather than being perceived as a threat. People from different backgrounds will be a positive contribution to a group since they will bring in different ideas, knowledge and perspectives on different issues.  Diversity enhances creativity within the organizations. People come up with ideas that are more creative since they are drawing their ideas from different experiences. They are also more productive, and the quality of their work tends to improve (Stevens et al., 2008).

Despite these benefits, some scholars have noted the fact that diversity tends to increase conflicts at the work place. There is a decrease in social assimilation. People from one particular group will tend to integrate together, leaving the others out. This can be detrimental to the operation of the firm, as people will not be able to cooperate in different activities. People belonging to the minority community can change the way organizations work and how they design their policies. They are more likely to think that they are being corrected because of their physical characteristic. For instance, a woman might tend to think that she has been passed up for promotion because of her gender and this might not necessarily be the case (Stevens et al., 2008).

I have dealt with cases of discrimination at the work place. I saw how discrimination could limit the organization. This happened when I was working at one particular organization where there were very few minorities. I noticed is that the minorities, (in this case women), did not believe that they could accomplish much because that was the attitude in the organization. Many of them were comfortable handling minor roles in the company because that is what they were assigned. Some of the women could have done the job in a better way than the men who were in management positions. I started encouraging women to have faith in themselves. I showed them that they could contribute more to the organization. I then encouraged and compelled the management to have better terms for the women, such as better pay. My strategy worked, and I saw some of the women take leadership positions especially in the human resource department. Since then, the organization has adopted a different approach of management. They have learnt to appreciate diversity, and they recognize that it is more beneficial for them to do so.

Executive Summary

The main aim of this report is to highlight the extent of diversity at the work place. The paper highlights why some people do not accept diversity, and why they tend to discriminate against others. The paper notes some of the benefits of having a diverse work place. It highlights why some of the leaders are taking an active role in ensuring that their organizations are diverse. The paper also shows some of the costs or disadvantages that occur due to having people from different backgrounds working together. Finally, I note one of the experiences I had when working with an organization that did not appreciate or acknowledge diversity.



DelCampo, G. R., Jacobson, K. J., Buren, V., & Blancero, M. D. (2011). Comparing immigrant and US born Hispanic business professionals: Insights on discrimination. Cross Cultural Management: An International Journal 18 (3), 327-350

Ely, J.R., & Thomas, A. D. (2001). Cultural diversity at work: The effects of diversity perspectives on work group processes and outcomes. Administrative Science Quarterly 46 (2), 229-273

Kaifi, A. B., Franklin Univerrsity, Mujtaba, G. B., & Nova Southeastern University. (2009) Workforce discrimination: An Inquiry on the perceptions of Afghan-American Professionals. Journal of Business Studies Quarterly 1, (1), 1-15

Stevens, G. F., Plaut, C. V., & Sanchez-Burks, J. (2008). Unlocking the benefits of diversity: All-inclusive multiculturalism and positive organizational change. The Journal of Applied Behavioral Science 44 (1), 116-133

Triana, C. M., Kim, K., & Garcia, F. M. (2011). To help or not to help? Personal value for diversity moderates the relationship between discrimination against minorities and citizenship behavior toward minorities. Journal of Business Ethics 102 (1), 333-342

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