Diversity Challenges- Stereotyping - Page 2
Gender issues often have a strong impact on a workplace because these types of issues elicit different communication styles and perceptions. These issues can also lead to sexual harassment and other types of discrimination and those that are very subtle. However, these issues are not limited to gender issues, but also include sexual issues, cultural issues and lifestyle issues.
Gender issues are excellent for exploring how stereotypes develop and discrimination occurs. For instance, women often feel undervalued in the workplace, while men often think that they cannot do the same jobs as them. This is a classic stereotype.
Age is another issue, including whether an employee is too old or too young for their position. For instance, Gen Y are presently in leadership positions at the workplace, some may wonder whether they have enough experience for their position as well as life in general.
Sexual orientation issues also arise causing stereotypes and discrimination. As more gay men and lesbian women make their presence known in the workplace and openly talk about their sexuality and partners, many people simply do not understand it. These people are often the center of disrespectful jokes and commentary. Organizations are also openly hiring these individuals into managerial positions. These types of situations often cause tension and even violence between these individuals.
Individuals with disabilities might also be stereotyped and discriminated against. Although the Americans with Disabilities Act of 1990 ensures workplace corrections so that disabled people can work easily in their positions, they often feel as though they are left out of the office culture.
Stereotyping and discriminating against certain people and classes that are mostly protected by law, not only affects the bottom line revenues of the workplace, but decreases morale, where employees are disengaged, increase absenteeism, diminishes the capability of recruiting and retaining talents. All these factors will not only decrease productivity, but also subjects the organization to major lawsuits that costs million of dollars in settlements and punitive damages, with a risk to tarnish its reputation forever and can be detrimental to small and middle size businesses.
Diversity starts at home.