As I thought of how I would approach the topic of diversity, I recalled a conversation that I had with a co-worker. We were talking about diversity, and what it meant to our company and ourselves. We both discussed that valuing diversity requires an appreciation for the difference and similarities of our organization members. Valuing diversity goes beyond compliance. To create an environment in which everyone feels valued and accepted, an organization must be committed to fostering acceptance, understanding, and appreciation for the differences among its employees. .
The major perceptions and beliefs that I have developed about diversity through my first two reading assignments is that diversity is more than just about people of color and race. Diversity, for me, is about a person's culture, their belief system and values. Cultural diversity can be differences in age, ethnic heritage, gender, physical qualities, race, and other human differences. Prior to starting my studies in Diversity in the Workplace, I felt that diversity was just about people of race. I never looked at the aspect that diversity was anything more than that. I uncovered through my first two weeks of reading in this course, that my thinking about what diversity meant was a little narrow.
The new perceptions and beliefs that I have developed about diversity have broadened my knowledge, and way of thinking, about diversity not only in the workplace, but also in general. I feel that I have gained valuable knowledge about the importance of others beliefs and values. It is important for me, as a professional, in today's workplace to set an example about what diversity is and how people from different cultures expect to be treated. I have gained awareness, through my readings, which will enable me to become more conscious of how I interact with people from different cultures in the workplace. This awareness will prove to be quite useful in assisting me to look at how my company views diversity.