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  • Writer's pictureaden sanlano

Unraveling Diversity: A Closer Look at the Varied Layers in The Workplace

Picture source: Amazing Workplaces

Workplace diversity encompasses the blend of employees, each contributing unique identities formed by various factors such as ethnicity, race, physical and mental traits, life experiences, and more. The goal of diversity efforts is to ensure a representation of diverse employees, fostering a rich tapestry of thoughts, opinions, and skill sets within the organization. The substantial advantages derived from embracing diversity and inclusion in the workplace provide a significant advantage for any organization. In the modern business landscape, organizations must prioritize diversity, equity, and inclusion to remain competitive. Neglecting these efforts poses the risk of creating less productive, less stable, and less appealing workplaces, leading to decreased employee satisfaction and ultimately impacting profitability.

Organizations should be mindful of four distinct "layers" of diversity, which collectively offer a comprehensive overview of workplace diversity. These four dimensions serve as a framework that encompasses all subsequent types of diversity within the workplace.

In their 2003 book, "Diverse Teams at Work: Capitalizing on the Power of Diversity," Lee Gardenswartz and Anita Rowe presented the "four layers of diversity" or "wheel of diversity" model. This model offers organizations insights into establishing inclusive workplaces, fostering diverse teams, and cultivating relationships. It delineates four layers of attributes that contribute to diversity and shape our information processing.

  1. Personality — Encompassing an individual's values, beliefs, and preferences, this aspect is formed during early life and can be influenced by various circumstances and experiences.

  2. Internal dimensions — Attributes that are primarily beyond our direct control, these characteristics are the initial impressions we form about others, leading to assumptions and judgments. They often contribute to significant divisions among people, giving rise to challenges related to gender, race, or sexual orientation.

  3. External dimensions — Elements of our lives that are subject to potential control and may evolve over time. These attributes serve as the foundation for decisions regarding careers, work styles, and social circles, often shaped by environmental, cultural, and societal norms and experiences. Examples of such factors include physical appearance, parental status, religion, income, and educational background.

  4. Organizational dimensions — Elements of culture or classifications within a workplace or organization that are typically defined and influenced by leadership and the prevailing culture. These dimensions often play a critical role in shaping opportunities for career advancement and promotion. Examples include seniority, division or department affiliation, job classification, or alignment with a union.

TechConnect is committed to fostering Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion (DEI) at every layer of its organizational structure. Recognizing the importance of embracing various dimensions of diversity, from individual attributes to external influences, the company prioritizes creating an inclusive environment where each team member's unique identity is acknowledged and celebrated. By incorporating the principles of DEI into leadership decisions, career opportunities, and organizational culture, TechConnect not only ensures a diverse and supportive workplace but also contributes to the overall success and innovation of the company. The commitment to DEI is ingrained in the company's DNA, driving its mission to create a workplace that thrives on the strengths of its diverse workforce.

Source: Aperian, Orghacking, American College of Radiology

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