We live in a world where globalisation is at its peak. Gone are the days where exclusive groups are formed and remain segregated from others. In a nation, what more a workplace, we see people of diverse ethnicities and cultures come together, share the same space, and collaborate with one another to create something new. In conjunction with World Day for Cultural Diversity for Dialogue and Development, here are some tips on understanding differences and embracing diversity in your workplace!
Be respectful to others.
When getting to know someone who is of a different culture or background, you would have it in your best interests to develop good relations with them. This entails being kind, considerate, and respectful in your interactions with the person which would bring about harmony between the both of you. The opposite of which would be to be mean, insensitive, and downright disrespectful, what more discriminatory against the other, which would cause unrest in the workspace. Being respectful especially when sharing differing perspectives is essential to developing, establishing, and maintaining a healthy and harmonious work relationship.
Share food and cultural experiences.
We won’t be able to go out as much as we used to, depending on the state of the pandemic where you are. However, when getting to know one another’s cultural backgrounds, the best is to have shared experiences. Some ways you can share cultural experiences today are by delivering a packaged traditional dish to each other’s homes, and recommending videos of traditional arts from each one’s culture. Of course, what better way to bring people together than with food and some art? Familiarising yourself with other cultures helps shape your understanding, which will play a part in embracing your neighbour.
Compromise sometimes, agree to disagree.
Having diversity within a company or department is not without their challenges. Due to differences in background and culture, there is bound to be some sort of clashes in opinions and perspectives. This is fairly normal. However, we need to work together and not hurt each other over differences so that we can flourish as a team. Learn to seek out compromise, or agree to disagree on some things. Then, find a common good which all of you appreciate and work together towards. This shows that though we may not always be on the same page, it does not mean we have to rip each other out of the book.
As a modern society, we cannot afford to live in segregation and discrimination towards one another, not even in the workplace. If we take the time and effort to get to know and understand each other, you would see that we are really more alike than you think. Diversity is important, and if we can embrace it, we can achieve many great things.