Change occurs in all organizations but not all organizations progress. Progress is a planed process of moving from one defined state to the other to ensure that business processes are efficient, prompt and effective. To remain competitive, an organization should put in place good plans for progress and ensure that the plans are implemented correctly (Kent, 2001). According to the Diversity task force report (2000), diversity includes all characteristics and experiences that define each of us as individuals.
Consider a small community college with students mainly from the surrounding neighborhood. Most employees of the college are also from the neighborhood. Five years later, the college has grown and now has students of deferent nationalities and gender. The college has embraced technology and currently offers online courses through the internet. The college has also opened three remote satellite campuses in different states.
The problem to be addressed is that the college has grown to the international market and is facing difficulties responding to the needs of its students who are ethnically and culturally diverse. The college needs to look for ways of managing the diversity of its customers and meet unique needs of individual students if it is to succeed and remain competitive.
The solution is to change human resource management policies and practices. The human resource managers should promote diversity in the composition of employees. Valuing and recognizing diversity will enable the college to draw the most from the skills of its workforce (Diversity task force report, 2000). It will also enable the college to attract and retain the best and most qualified workers capable of responding to the diverse needs of its customers leading to effective delivery of services and increase in customer loyalty (Diversity task force report, 2000).
Employees can be a source of creativity if managed properly. The human resource department will therefore put measures in place to ensure that talents and abilities of all workers are used for the benefit of the college as a whole. They will formulate and enforce practices that achieve and value workforce diversity within the college because this is critical in enhancing productivity, effectiveness, and maintaining competitive advantage (Diversity task force report, 2000).
Change is often accompanied by fear, uncertainly and dread. This might lead stakeholders to resist and sabotage efforts to implement diversity initiatives or change human resource management practices. Diverse composition of workforce will also present challenges to human resource managers in their efforts to meet the needs of a diverse workforce (Kent, 2001).
After reassessing the solution I realized that for the diversity initiatives to succeed everyone in the college have to be involved in developing and maintaining effective and acceptable diversity policies and not only the human resource managers. Diversity will therefore be integrated into all business processes and core values of the college. Top managers will clearly and concisely communicate diversity mission, vision and strategic direction to all stakeholders with the aim of promoting dialog and minimizing resistance. Diversity will thus be a top priority in the college and a personal responsibility of top executive because of its importance.
As the size and business environment of an organization change, it is important that the organization keep track of change and position itself where it can utilize the opportunities brought by change. To avoid negative impacts, the process of change must be disciplined, documented and flexible enough to benefit from periodic reviews and beneficial modification (Clemmer, 2001). A diverse climate is beneficial to organizations because it enables an organization to attract and retain quality employees. This will increase the college’s profits and competitive advantage.
Clemmer, J. (2001). Growing with Change, Retrieved from http://www.managerwise.com/article.phtml?id=261
Diversity task force report (2000). Best Practices in Achieving Workforce Diversity, Retrieved from http://govinfo.library.unt.edu/npr/initiati/benchmk/workforce-diversity.pdf
Kent, R.H. (2001). Ensuring Organizational Success and Progress, Retrieved from http://www.managerwise.com/article.phtml?id=135