International diversity management
This factsheet was last updated in July 2016.
Diversity and its value
CIPD defines diversity as valuing everyone as an individual. Our Executive briefing Diversity: stacking up the evidence identified three types of diversity:
- social category diversity – the differences in demographic characteristics such as age and race
- informational diversity – the differences in background such as education and knowledge
- value diversity – the differences in personality and attitudes.
Diversity (often referred to as diversity and inclusion management) has increased in prominence in organisations and focuses upon approaches and intervention aiming to accommodate their workers’ demographic and personal differences in order to maximizing the contribution of staff to organizational goals. Diversity and inclusion approaches in organisations are typically therefore concerned with the social category factors. However, as this CIPD research shows, this has broader implications.
Each employee brings to their workplace their own world view, experiences and relationships, and the impact is amplified in the context of international working. Carrying out international assignments exposes employees to a huge variety of diverse issues and cultures. While the extent of the diversity will differ, a key skill required of international managers is to harness that diversity and to make it work effectively for the organisation.
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