Diversity in the workplace hasn’t always been accepted, much less encouraged, but the fight for equality among individuals of different genders, races, ages, and sexual orientations is beginning to pay off, and workplaces are far better for it. Canada is a wonderfully diverse country, and the more that diversity is reflected in the workplace, the better that workplace will be. Here are some reasons why diversity within the workplace is so important.
Workplaces reflect society
What you see in the workplace is a great indication of what’s going on in our society. If women are being underpaid, that’s a signal of where they stand on the social totem pole. If immigrants are being overworked, that’s an indicator of how these people are treated outside the workforce. Consequently, if our workplaces are filled with people of different genders, races, ages and sexual orientations, and people within these workplaces are able to communicate effectively and get along, we move forward as a society, not just a workplace.
Diversity brings a variety of viewpoints
Everybody has a unique experience and opinion, and when workplaces are diverse, you get a variety of opinions and viewpoints, making for well-rounded discussions, which lead to more creativity and more efficient problem solving.
Diversity means more talent in the workplace
Employers that favor certain demographics are missing out on so many qualified and talented individuals. Meanwhile, workplaces that are committed to a fair hiring process based on merit will build stronger teams, as their selection of employees is not limited.
Workplace diversity makes you more adaptable.
Diverse workplaces don’t just help the organization thrive, but they also contribute to the growth of the individuals within it. When you work with people that see the world differently than you, you not only gain a better understanding of yourself and the world around you, but you also learn to adapt. Working with people from different walks of life requires you to alter the way you communicate, the way you listen, and often the way you think, allowing you to grow into a more well-rounded person.
Workplace diversity does not simply mean that there is an equal distribution of races and genders. Workplace diversity is about hiring based on qualifications, not discriminating, and providing equal treatment and opportunities to all workers regardless of age, gender, sexual orientation, or race. When it comes to diversity in the workplace, although we’ve come a long way, we’re still not where we need to be, which is where you come in. If you are being discriminated against at work, or if you see discrimination happening, talk to your Shop Steward about filing a grievance.
Teamsters 987 is committed to fighting for diversity and equality in the workplace, to find out more about how we fight for you, check out How Teamsters 987 stands up for each member of their union family.