Managing Cultural Diversity

Running Head: Managing Cultural Diversity

Managing Cultural Diversity







There is no doubt that cultural diversity is phenomenon that is getting much attention and importance in this century. What brought about this phenomenon can be attributed to different factors starting with the increasing globalization of economies, in particular the rise of Asia, which is expected to represent about 30 to 50 percent of world GDP; second, the involvement of international teams that play key driving for more innovations; and third, emergence of critical concerns specific to this century like pandemic diseases, terrorism, and global warming; and lastly, the accelerated migration and diversity in most nation which brings about demographic changes. According to Thomas & Inkson (2009), if there is one impact that can be seen from accelerated migration and globalization it is the “dramatic increase in the opportunity and need to interact with people” characterized as diverse in culture.

Today, it is fast becoming a common reality wherein cultural interactions happens regardless of an individual’s in having an acquaintance coming from a different cultural background. According to Allwood et al. (2007), there are now daily interactions with culturally different people at work, educational institutions and social. This has brought thinking cultural diversity as no longer a ‘melting pot’ but rather a multiculturalism being an essential part of modern society (Parvis, 2003). This has now brought organizations, the primary stakeholder in this issue, to work with diverse and culturally different workforce, thus only logical that their ability to manage this cultural diversity will have an important role in their future and success (Parvis, 2003; Stewart, 2007).

Research Objectives

The research objectives of this study are:

  1. Learn the different ways of managing a culturally diverse workforce.
  2. Identity literature gap in managing diverse and culturally different workforce
  3. Identify whether present diverse management theories are enough to tackle the issue of cultural diversity in organizations.

Research Question

Research questions for this study are:

  1. What are key strategies in managing culturally diverse workforce in today’s organizations?
  2. How well-know is diversity management in today’s organizations?
  3. How far is the progress in terms of development of diversity management in organizations?
  4. Is there a need for diversity management in organization as there is an obvious external and internal demographic changes that brings about culturally diverse workforce?

Literature Review

In order to understand cultural diversity, it must be important to know and define what diversity and culture is. This is considering diversity is a popular subject that gets many definitions in presenting its complexity and, at the same time, the same also to culture, which has many definitions and concepts.

According Knomo & Cox (1999), diversity is a contested term that brings about many definitions and some of its definitions are broad. On the other hand, Stevens & Ogunji (2011) suggested that many defined diversity as the race and ethnicity of people, though it must be understood that diversity as a concept includes much more. The tandem of Stevens & Ogunji (2011) also suggested that diversity is the differences among people as individuals. Furthermore, Parvis (2003) suggested that diversity exists in every society and workforce. With this suggestion diversity then is the difference in culture and ethnicity and difference in physical qualities, language, class, sexual orientation, gender identity and religious beliefs.

Kundu (2001) suggested a definition to culture as something that “explains how people make sense of their world”. It must be known that any person or individual will be subjected to natural part of learning processes starting from early childhood, wherein will be their foundation on they will interpret everything. It is also logical to define culture as, according to Seymen (2006) as a way of life of a group of people and is shared by the members of that social group. Hofstede (1991) gave the term “software of the mind” by which people see their culture. According to Hofstede (1991), this software of the mind is based or the result of the social environment in which the individual grew up and had their life experiences.


The researcher plans to use mixed method in the acquisition of data needed for his research. What this means is that the researcher will both use quantitative and qualitative method design in the collection of data. The mixed method will be implemented so as to understand fully well the research at hand and gain understanding of the answers to the research questions in the goal of achieving the objectives. The researcher deems that it is not enough that only one method will be used in this study considering either one of them will not suffice to achieve the research objectives at hand.

Data Collection and Analysis

In this study, the researcher will try to use varied approaches in the purpose of gathering and collecting data needed to answer the research objectives. As has been aforementioned, these approaches are both quantitative and qualitative at the same time. Considering that the researcher will use quantitative research method, he will employ the use of a survey to gather information from known stakeholders affected by the issue. The researcher will prepare a set of questionnaires that will be handed out to target respondents, mostly managers of companies and organizations.

More than this, the researcher will also employ a qualitative research method in the collection of data for the study. The researcher will try to make an arrangement with known leaders and managers in the business industry and interview them on the subject of cultural diversity management.

Outline of Presentation

After that researcher have had collected the data needed for this study and have already made a conclusion and insights on the research objectives, he will then present the result of the study to different stakeholders who will benefit from the study and at the same time act on it through different means:

    • Videos
    • Powerpoint Presentation
    • Word Document
    • Conference
    • Seminar
    • Talks


Allwood, J., Lindström, N. B., Börjesson M., Edebäck C., Myhre R. Voionmaa K. et al. (2007). European Intercultural Workplace: SVERIGE, Projektpartnerskapet European Intercultural Workplace (EIW), Leonardo Da Vinci, Kollegium SSKKII, Göteborg University, Sweden

Hofstede, G. (1991). Cultures and Organizations: Software of the Mind. NYM, New York: McGraw-Hill

Kundu, S. C., (2001). Managing cross-cultural diversity. Delhi Business Review, Vol. 2 (2) no page numbers

Nkomo, S. M. & Cox, Jr. T., (1999), Diverse identities in organizations, in Clegg S. R., Hardy C., Nord W. R., 1999, Managing organizations, current issues. London: Sage publications 88-106

Parvis L., (2003) Diversity and effective leadership in multicultural workplaces. Journal of Environmental Health, Vol. 65(7) p 37, 65

Seymen, O. A (2006). Cross Cultural Management: An International Journal. Cross Cultural Management: An International Journal. Vol. 13(4), p. 296-315

Stevens, R., & Ogunji, E. (2011). Preparing Business Students for the Multi-cultural Work Environment of the Future: A Teaching Agenda. International Journal Of Management, Vol. 28(2), 528-544.

Stewart, V., (2007). Becoming Citizens of the World. Educational Leadership, Vol.  64(7), 8-14.

Thomas, D. C., & Inkson, K. (2009). Cultural intelligence: Living and working globally. San Francisco, CA: Berrett-Koehler Publishers.

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