The Realist Conflict Theory: The Challenges Of Diversity In The Workplace

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Diversity, in its broadest definition, and as afforded by Barak (2008), refers to the specific categorization of certain human differences. According to Shore, Chung-Herrera, Dean, Ehrhart, Jung, Randel, & Singh (2009), these differences are what make up the dimensions of diversity such as race, age, gender, disability, ethnicity, and sexual orientation. There is no question as to the fact that there is an influx of diverse populations into the worlds labor market (Groschl, 2012). While the causes of the diversification of the global workforce may be divergent from region to region, the resulting challenges and outcomes are, nonetheless, similar. One major problem arising from a diverse workforce, as Barak (2008) provides, is exclusion. The ability to manage these challenges within the global context and in the 21st century, presents an enormous task with regard to organizational management, culture and structures. The purpose of this paper is to explain the challenges …show more content…
In this theory, Sherif explores how intergroup conflict as a result for competition for resources, impacts on workforce diversity. The principle conceptualization of this theory assumes that people are likely to be in conflict either individually or within the context of a group, when in competition for limited resources. Unlike other psychological and cognitive theories that explain individual and organizational behavior, the realist conflict theory does to rely on the structure representation of an individual or a group, to formulate the occurrence of conflict. What it presumes, is that the nature of human beings is competitively founded, and, given the availability of lack of resources, such competition is what gives rise to conflict. As Barak (2008) provides, people tend to act in their own self-interest; essentially, to maximize their own rewards to the detriment of

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