With an average of 11% of the Lawrence University population being international, as well as 112 off campus programs (102 of which are study abroad), diversity is not hard to find on campus. Compare this number to Knox College’s 6.8% and you can see that not every student in higher education gets the same exposure to diversity as Lawrentians. This diversity is not only a large drawing point for schools, it also comes into play as a significant antagonist within the workplace; many people consider diversity an issue, some sort of statistic to deal with or an egg-shell topic that should be pushed aside to avoid conflict. Instead of hiding such an important issue away, it should be faced and both the advantages and issues placed upon the table. Many employers and businesses are starting to do just that.
The Los Alamos National Laboratory advertised in the first issue of Equal Opportunity Magazine, and in a follow-up celebrating the magazine’s 40th anniversary, the LANL described diversity as being able to “…promote innovation, enhance problem-solving, cause positive change, and lead to a more successful and productive organization” (“Diversity Hiring Trends” 23). There are other benefits to diversity in the workplace, including:
• Increased adaptability
• A broader service range
• Varying viewpoints, as well as
• Effective execution of tasks, because there are multiple ways of getting them accomplished.
An excellent example that showcases not only these advantages, but also the challenges of diversity in the workplace and ways to overcome them can be found in an article by Josh Greenberg, “Diversity in the Workplace: Benefits, Challenges, and Solutions.” That can be found at this link:
“Diversity Hiring Trends.” Equal Opportunity Winter 2008/2009: 22-24
Job Choices 2012 Diversity Edition 2009