We each bring our backgrounds, beliefs, values, talents and behavior standards to work. Taken together, these define how we treat others and how we expect to be treated. They define what makes each of us unique.
To respect diversity is to recognize each individual for his/her unusual and unique talents. These talents are as multifaceted and complex as the individual they belong to. Learning how to deal with diversity involves acquiring some new skills. In fact, succeeding at work is very difficult for those who are unable to collaborate with a diverse group of people.
Diversity by itself doesn't make an organization strong or successful. Dealing with diversity in a healthy, productive and proactive manner, however, can help an organization succeed.
Describing personal culture and values
The great law of culture is: Let each become all that he was created capable of being.
-Thomas Carlyle, 1827Read the list of descriptive words below and respond to the following questions.
Words that relate to culture and values
Words that describe who I am
Words have tremendous power. Look at the words you have chosen on the previous pages. Answer the questions posed below about your selections.
Describing organizational culture and values
Operationally, culture is defined as shared values, beliefs, expectations, attitudes, assumptions and norms. These are seldom written down or discussed; rather they are learned by living the organization and becoming part of it.
Beyond the Quick Fix
Contributing to the organization's workplace values
Understanding what respect means to each of us is a starting point to help us see the importance of treating others respectfully. The beginning of this section mentions that learning how to deal with diversity involves acquiring some new skills. Many of these skills are directly related to communication, some to practicing ethical behavior, and others to carrying out our work in a professional manner.
Below is a list of workplace values. Under each of the values there is room for you to list ways in which this value can be practiced, acknowledged and upheld in the workplace. You might want to talk with colleagues to expand your action list. These conversations will help you see how your organization promotes positive workplace values.
Confront prejudices and stereotypes that demean or exclude people.