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How to Manage Workplace Diversity & Motivational Approaches as a Human Resources Manager

by David Nelson

As a human resources manager, it's part of your job to make sure that all employees are comfortable in the workplace, treated with respect and are able to perform optimally. Many experts believe that there is a direct relationship between workplace diversity and motivation. Diverse workplaces tend to employ people from different backgrounds and age groups. Employers who hire a diverse workforce tend to limit their turnover rate. Diversity in a workplace also leads to stronger problem-solving skills among team members.

Communicate

Communicate with your employees and management about your company's goals regarding diversity and why these values are important. Many human resource managers develop training sessions that employees are paid to attend. These training sessions can include guest speakers and can be an outlet for workers to discuss their own goals and frustrations regarding issues such as fairness and discrimination and how these issues affect their own motivation. Human resources managers also can send out newsletters and add to the company website so that issues of diversity and motivation become part of an ongoing conversation. It's also important to understand that ongoing communication helps a team to feel that they are working together and that they are accountable.

Lead

Human resources managers can have a great deal of influence on their companies by setting examples. Make sure that you are known to treat each and every employee, regardless of gender, age or ethnicity, with the same degree of respect. Your attitude in the workplace should be one of compassion, optimism and forward-thinking. When you hear about behavior that has a negative influence on motivation, it is your job to speak out and correct it. For example, if an employee criticizes a coworker for being too old to do his or her job, you should schedule a meeting with the employee to explain why this kind of talk is unacceptable and how it can create a hostile work environment that is counterproductive to creating a motivational workplace from which all can benefit.

Policy

As a human resources manager, a large part of your job is to oversee the hiring process and ensure that all policies regarding behavior in the workplace are clear and that all employees have access to this information. It is a good idea to periodically remind management and employees about standards regarding the importance of diversity in the workplace, especially about how diversity can strengthen the team as a whole. Communicate with managers about how they are doing regarding hiring a diverse workforce and where you would like to see some improvement. For example, if you find that one department has many male team leaders, you might feel that the women in that department are becoming discouraged, especially those who are excelling at their jobs. By creating a diversity policy, all employees and managers can share common goals

Evaluate

Consistently evaluate the diversity and motivational initiatives performed at your company. This can be done with a variety of methods. For example, you can analyze the degrees of diversity within specific departments matched with the overall moods and rates of efficiency within those departments. It also can be helpful to distribute diversity surveys to your employees. This is an excellent way to learn how valued various groups feel within your company. By regularly evaluating the diversity initiatives in your workplace, you can ensure that your staff is competitive and valued on a personal level.

About the Author

David Nelson has written about business, management and career guidance for companies such as Conjecture Corporation and Valley Direct Media and has worked in management and as a college level writing tutor. He has a Masters degree in writing from the New School Writing Program in New York City.

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