“One of the greatest challenges facing our nation and our institutions is the increasing diversity of our society.” (Sue, Bingham, Porche-Burke & Vasquez, 1999, p. 1062). The workplace is much more complex today than it was five years ago due to globalization, cross-cultural teams, multiple languages, changing demographics and persistent forms of subtle discrimination (micro aggressions). “To choose not to engage in dialogue about diversity in almost any modern organization is just plain dumb.” (Davidson & Ferdman, 2001, p. 36) However, even in the best intentioned learning organizations, led by competent leaders, many diversity initiatives fail to have sustained results. Why? The most common reasons include:
- Absence of a diversity/multicultural OD framework
- Lack of integrative practices
- Lack of skill and self-awareness by OD practitioners
- Lack of awareness, competency and attitude to confront systems of power and privilege (Rasmussen, 2006; Romney, 2008; Rowe 1990).
- Employee Responsibilities and Rights Journal, 3(2), 153-163. Sue, D.W., Bingham, R., Porche-Burke, L., & Vasquez, M. (1999).
- Strategies for Managing Human Resource Diversity: From Resistance to Learning, Academy of Management Executive, 13, p. 69. Davidson, M.N. & Ferdman, B.M. (2001).