Managing Diversity: A Complete Desk Reference & Planning Guide, third edition
By Lee Gardenswartz and Anita Rowe
2010, 520 pages, Paperback with CD-ROM
SHRMStore Item #: 61.12505
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Knowing that diversity brings benefits and advantages does not necessarily mean organizations are embracing the changes. The rich mix does not always lead to harmony. The blend of cultures, genders, lifestyles, and values often becomes a source of misunderstanding and conflict. Many enlightened leaders and managers, from CEOs in the executive suite to supervisors on the shop floor, want to create an environment where differences are valued and where people who look, talk, and think differently can work productively together. However, most managers' do not have the knowledge or experience to orchestrate such harmonious change. Like explorers in a new land, they are entering uncharted areas. Old methods fall short, and new ones are just in the beginning of the development process. Existing mind?sets are limiting, yet new paradigms have not come into focus. Long-held assumptions are no longer in sync with today's reality, and new truths are yet to be determined.
The task is daunting, the challenge is formidable, and the stakes are enormous.
Managing Diversity: A Complete Desk Reference & Planning Guide is designed for those who are engaged in this task and who are creating humane, prosperous, positive, and productive organizations across the United States and around the world.
This book can be useful in a number of ways. It gives both a macro and a micro view of diversity. Which view you choose to focus on at any given time depends upon the objectives and needs of your organization. While the book is written from a U.S. American diversity perspective, it also has a global reach and framework. Readers are encouraged to adapt any tool in the book to their global or virtual team's reality or circumstance.
Section I is intended for practitioners who are dealing with the nitty-gritty issues that emerge when people from different places, backgrounds, ages, and religions come together in the workplace. This section is full of ready-to-use tools that can be used as is or adapted by managers and trainers for use with individuals, workgroups, or training session participants. In addition to hands-on materials, you will also find suggestions for dealing with specific diversity-related problems you may be encountering, such as when to use an interpreter, how to solve culture-related conflicts, or what techniques to use in implementing effective performance reviews amidst group members with different cultural practices and values.
Section II provides the macro view for change agents and those in charge of strategic planning. The information in this section can help you modify existing organizational systems to remove the barriers that prevent your organization from capitalizing on diversity.
Section III offers information that clarifies the difference between managing diversity and previous anti-discriminatory policies.
Managing Diversity (now in its third edition) provides hands-on activities for any member of the organization accountable to the CEO, a board of directors, or manager who wants to have a better team or task force. It gives guidelines for implementing diversity initiatives from a strategic perspective, including a range of suggestions about measurement and evaluation. It is essentially a one-stop shop diversity primer full of information, context, examples, user-friendly tools, provocative questions for your organization, and a lot of practicality. It has been reinvigorated to suit our fast-paced technological world full of global teams. Opportunities for adaptation abound.
While the book aims to fill many functions, the book's most unique and valuable contribution is the plethora of tools and activities it offers managers, trainers, coordinators, consultants, and facilitators. The inventories and worksheets are relevant, easily reproducible, and ready to use. They provoke rich conversations and provide methods for dealing with significant and sometimes tough issues. Each activity comes complete with objectives, a description of the activity, processing questions, and notes about special caveats or considerations. The training materials, audits, instruments, questionnaires, and tools are user-friendly and provide variety in purpose and complexity. All will enable individuals and workgroups first to look inside themselves, then to look outside the personal domain to the organizational arena, and, finally, to move beyond insight and awareness toward change.