Today, the personnel of the company includes people of various background, from all different ethnic, cultural, national backgrounds, religions as well as identities. Companies can channelize the different talents available from the workforce that is culturally diverse (S Robbins, 2017). However, this diversity which includes people from different culture, gender, ethnic, religion may lead to issues such as discrimination, which may include bullying. Bullying at workplace has these days become a widespread act for workforces in multinational companies. Due to this, the job performance of the employees as well as their mental health may be affected substantially. Hence, it is essential for the management of the companies to counteract and lessen bullying at workplace amongst employees from crosscultural (Farmer, 2011). This essay focuses on the connection between diversity and bullying at workplace in companies in Australia. In this context, this essay will discuss benefits of diversity, workplace bullying due to diversity in Australia and the initiative taken by the companies and government to address the issue of workplace bullying.
Diversity is described as differences in terms of ethnicity, gender, age, religion, sexual orientation, physical ability and culture (Dahlia D. Cunningham, 2007). With rise in the migration and globalization, as well as growing competition in hiring, retaining and motivating the best workforce, corporations all over the world need to handle workforces with diversity. One of such countries in the world is Australia, which is utmost culturally diverse, as per the study conducted by L. Leveson in the International Journal of Manpower. However, there are various reasons that are create the challenges that can be related to diversity at workforce, comprising of communication difficulties, conflict, bullying, thus leading to lower performance and satisfaction of employees (P Skalsky, 2009). Thus, the top management requires to assist the managers to accomplish the likely benefits though handling with probable issues. Supervisors and Front-line managers should understand the judicial requirements and also the way to aid the employees improve their performance and satisfaction (Fapohunda, 2013). For instance, a male white manager in the company who may never have worked in different culture may require assistance in understanding the problems which could have been experienced by a black female manager who is from different continent in providing adverse feedback of performance to a male old subordinate.
Organizations that follow diversity at workplace tend to benefit in terms of tangible and intangible value. Diversity signifies that emphasis is led on the significance of teamwork as well as understanding. Such atmosphere can help the organisation to achieve good position to hold the diverse and globalized economy (Dahlia D. Cunningham, 2007). The organization will turn out to be more alert and open to change by holding diversity. Australian companies have realized that there are various benefits of embracing such diversity at workplace which are discussed below (Saxena, 2014):
Healthy Human Resources: A company that is well-known as a just and impartial employer may have a good chances to interest and retain workforce from a broader pool of competent talent. Additionally, a workforce with diversity may lead to improved retention of staff due to the team members having sense of involved and respected. As per Diversity Council of Australia, companies in Australia may progress their method to following diversity in the following parts:
The talent of Asian people in Australia is pointedly under-utilised since Australian companies all the time more cross the Asian Span, binding cultural diversity grow into imperious. Advance suppleness in the workplace, steps can be taken to help the working parents such that they may contribute in workplace diversity (Martin, 2014).
Increase in productivity: The workforce that is diverse can form a more supportive environment which may lead to improved self-esteem and efficiency, hence, giving the company an competitive edge. Researches have proved that women are more prolific if reinforced by supple arrangements for working. The company can gain the edge with improved efficiency by fetching as a broadminded and supple employer (Dahlia D. Cunningham, 2007).
Innovation and Creativeness: Now-a-days the marketplace which has become online and competitive, creativeness and innovation is imperative. Whichever business the company is into, it can improve by acceptance of different cultures, experiences, ages and genders. A workplace with diversity is considered as innovative workplace. The company should encourage individuals from various backgrounds in order to solve issues and get innovative ideas by celebrating diversity at the workplace. Such changed perceptions in turn may aid the company to get the advantage from changed lookouts and experiences of life. Coverage of Compliance: Since the culture of workplace will become diverse, there are chances that the government may enact to guard workforces from a variety of backgrounds. In addition, larger companies are progressively utilizing their power of procurement as share of the Corporate Social Responsibility (CSR) deeds to occupy with dealers that hold diversity.
The Fair Work Amendment Act 2013 outlines bullying at workplace as recurrent irrational behaviour of a person towards a member of staff that generates a risk to others safety as well as health (Australian Human Rights Commission, 2016). Bullying at workplace can unfavourably impact the physical as well as psychosomatic health of an individual. Bullying at workplace is a mental hazard which has the probable to injure an individual, and also form a psychosomatic risk since there are chances that an individual may be injured if uncovered from it. The workplace may reduce the workplace bullying risk and avert from fetching it as tolerable behaviour at the workplace, if operative control actions are taken to report and resolve the problems issues at workplace early (Fapohunda, 2013). Bullying at workplace that is recurrent and irrational behaviour that is directed to an individual staff member or group forms a risk to their safety and health. Irrational behaviour is the behaviour such that a sensible individual, having measured the situations, would understand as irrational, counting behaviour which is humiliating, victimising, threatening or intimidating. However, all the behaviour which makes an individual feel distressed or unappreciated at work may not be workplace bullying. Instances of behaviours, unintentional or intentional, which may be bullying at workplace if such behaviour is frequent, irrational and form a hazard to safety as well as health include the following (Farmer, 2011):
Today, Australia is considered as one of the countries that is diverse culturally since, it has people working in their companies from different backgrounds. However, there is issue of bullying at workplace faced by the individuals from diverse culture such as gender, ethnic, ages etc. A report by Safe Work Australia (SWA) revealed that bullying levels at workplaces in Australia are significantly high compared to level at international workplaces. Australian workplace barometer (AWB) project of SWA comprised retorts from 5,743 labors from six states and territories, without Qld and Vic. Among them, 6.8% of the respondents approved their experience of bullying in 2012, as compared to internationally at 1% to 4%. Their experience defined bullying as aggressive behaviour happening recurrently, and the prey experienced problems self-justifying himself. The major reason given by respondent for their becoming the victim was they coming different background (Occupational Health News, 2013).
In Australia, laws of state and national cover equivalent opportunity in employment and workplace anti-discrimination. The companies are obliged by the laws to form a workplace that is free from discernment and bullying. It is essential that as a company, it should understand duties under law of anti-discrimination and human rights. With this the company can progress efficiency and surge efficacy. The best practice policies and guidelines are designed by The Australian Human Rights Commission for the companies. The Fair Work Ombudsman assists in providing education as well as aid for workforces and companies on avoiding bulling due to discrimination at the workplace (Australian Government, 2016).
There are various reasons that create the challenges that can be related to diversity at workforce, comprising of communication difficulties, conflict, bullying, thus leading to lower performance and satisfaction of employees. Thus, the top management requires to assist the managers to accomplish the likely benefits though handling with probable issues. Analyzing the issue of workplace bullying in Australia due to diversity and studying the initiatives taken by the companies as well as government, there are few recommendations provided on the basis of framework of social marketing to direct the prohibition and managing of bullying at workplace. The recommendations include the following- Companies should recognize and mark the organisational and cultural factors that lead to the incidence of bullying at workplace. Empowering of the workforce through clear communication as well as policies is required to address the bullying issue in a better way. The concise and clear policies for workplace bullying is required to be implemented that is to be assisted by robust leadership. The managers of front-line and supervisors are to be provided with adequate training to explain the employees the benefit of working with people of diverse culture and to avoid and manage with occurrences of bullying at workplace. Bullying cases at workplace must be inspected and managed on immediate effect. Companies should safeguard that there is action taken against workplace bullying. Companies should continually arrange meets for the employees so make them feel that equality at workplace and also monitor and improve the strategies regarding bullying at workplace.