The topic brought up by the speaker is diversity in workplaces. Nowadays, more and more companies are willing to invest resources and implement new HR techniques for the sake of creating a diverse team. This was not the case in the past since employers were not interested in creating equal opportunities for all work applicants. Moreover, a diverse workplace was considered one with people from different areas of one town. However, the situation has changed, and a lot of effort has been put into figuring out the right approach when it comes to diversifying the human resource of an organization. First, the focus was on diversity itself, which implied hiring people with different ethnic backgrounds, sexual orientation, nationality, and life experiences. However, it was important to create an environment in which all the people felt included in the dialogue. Thus, inclusion became another factor to be considered. Moreover, as the workplaces became diverse, there was a need for equity. Equity allowed people to be treated fairly based on individual needs. Belonging is another essential factor that creates a beneficent environment that facilitates employee satisfaction.
A case study was discussed, which presented a situation in which employers had to take action. A large company that operates in an older building had one employee who went through a transition from male to female. The female workers started to complain when the transgender woman was using the women’s bathroom. The question given to the participants was a reflection on how the leaders should deal with this situation. A popular response was building a gender-neutral bathroom, which would be impossible due to the fact that the building is old and does not belong to the owner of the organization. People’s responses were implementing training on diversity, having a designated bathroom on one of the floors as a gender-neutral one, and other solutions. The speaker, however, suggested remote working as an excellent choice. Thus, people can avoid conflicts, and diversity is more achievable.
It is certain that the recent pandemic has changed the way employees operate. Employers realized that teleworking is not only cost-effective but also facilitates a less problematic work environment. Thus, various individuals from different backgrounds can operate together without the risk of misunderstanding each other. Moreover, even if a company still relies on office work, giving team members an opportunity to work from home will contribute to the minimization of internal issues. In case one particular worker finds it hard to get along with the colleagues or does not agree with some office policies, they will be able to remain a part of the workforce yet operate from home.
Diversity is a relatively new concern since, for the longest time, it was not a concept that was widely used by employers. Thus, current knowledge does not contain all the necessary information in regard to conflict mitigation. On the one hand, leaders have to think about the majority first and foremost since this is what creates an overall beneficial environment. On the other hand, inclusivity means listening and meeting everyone’s needs. Thus, it is essential to approach every situation based on unique circumstances. There is no general rule that applies to every organization, conflict, or team, so creativity and innovation must be at the core of the decision-making process.