The Impact of Diversity and Demographic Characteristics on Individual Behavior

1067 Words Nov 13th, 2006 5 Pages
Organizational diversity emphasizes achieving equality and opportunity in the work environment through the changing of organizational demographics. Diversity in the workplace emphasizes the appreciation of differences and creates an environment in which everyone feels valued and accepted, however it is individual behavior that determines the workplace environment. There are numerous types of diversity and demographic characteristics that impact on individual behavior.
Values and attitude differences are a key driver of individual behavior. Values and attitude is how a person sees, relates to and acts in and out of the workplace. Psychologist Milton Rokeach has divided values into two categories, terminal values (the goals an individual
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Each generation has different common events which occurred during formative years that shaped their current work expectations. People who grew up during the Depression may have different expectations and behaviors than younger people who are often referred to as Generation X workers. Values can collide when members of different generations work together. Generation X members are often by viewed by older workers as frustrated, cynical, hopeless and unmotivated slackers who still live at home, wear grunge clothing and listen to alternative music. Conversely, older workers are viewed by Generation X members as dinosaurs who are technologically ignorant, mired in the old ways, who are hanging on to jobs that should be staffed by their peers. While these two generations many be very different when it comes to the use of technology, respect for authority, skill building, time spent on the job, and work/life balance, when the older workforce steps out to mentor the younger workforce a cohesive group is formed.
While age is a major demographic characteristic that impacts individual behavior in the ever-changing workforce, the concept of sexual orientation is the most volatile. Federal laws prohibits employment discrimination based on race, color, religion, sex, national origin; individuals who are 40 years of age or older, qualified individuals

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