I recently came across a statement which said, “let us move away from Unity in Diversity to Celebrate Diversity”. Very interesting!
The time could not have been better to celebrate diversity now, when the Indian organizations are getting more and more diverse. Nevertheless, their diversity is more visible in their choice of businesses and approach to success. Look inside these organizations and you discover that, diversity is interpreted in terms of gender-ratio of employees only.
Diversity has already existed in the Indian organizations, but today has become a buzzword with the prefix “Gender”. This in a way implies that there is limited appreciation of diversity. If Radio organizations get too much packed away by the term “Gender Diversity”, then they carry the danger of diluting other dimensions of diversity, which are largely interrelated and overlapping.
What are some of these already existing dimensions of diversity, which organizations already know and merely need to turn further on them if they truly want to “Celebrate Diversity” explicitly?
Employees represent different cultures. An Indian law mandates that certain % of employment be given to local people. It is likewise recognized that even a local individual who belongs to another region, keeps his or her cultural values and customs. Should not organizations imbibe some of the cultural values and regional customs, brought in by different employees, for enriching the overall organizational culture? Multinational companies run special programs on culture management for employees being sent abroad. However, most Indian companies do not consider necessary to tell employees about the cultural subtleties of the location where employees are being placed.
Socioeconomic status of the employees is a critical dimension of diversity that is undergoing a subtle and significant change. In the last couple of years, due to availability of information and opportunities, persons from deprived socioeconomic classes have started making their presence felt in different professions. This is a healthy sign as it has been always a challenge to bring lower socioeconomic classes into the economic mainstream. Further, organizations have more talent available for their demands due to such changes in socioeconomic status of prospects.
Employees have different spiritual faiths. Shouldn’t spiritual faith be a dimension of organizational diversity? Don’t we associate certain attributes of employees with the faith they believe in? I firmly believe that if India has to become truly a secular state in the next decade, then the Indian organizations will have to look at employees only from the talent perspective. It is evident that the secular organizations have contributed a great deal in the progress of the developed countries.