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Diversity among members of any work group serves to enhance critical and analytical discussion components. In order to describe the benefits of diversity, the case of a consulting firm that has been assigned to design a plan for creating a more cohesive office in two new locations will be discussed. The work team is made up of five managers who came from different backgrounds, both social and cultural. They needed to focus on the transition of two groups of specialists with their families to new offices in Hong Kong and Spain. The managers had to find solutions to improve cooperation and collaboration between these offices. The main goal of this paper is to discuss the presented case, highlighting critical analysis conducted and benefits of diversity among the team members.
In order to address this issue, the management team utilized a critical situation analysis. The top manager, Tom, clearly explained the task and started the discussion. He aimed at exploring areas that required particular attention and asked for suggestions. The analysis was based on comparing and contrasting different opinions about the subject of the meeting, which demonstrated the abilities of the team members to accept and develop ideas of other debaters. Therefore, each suggestion was critically analyzed to reveal its weaknesses and strengths. For example, the first member, Stephen, recommended focusing on a training program for employees and their families. Other team members supported his idea but elaborated a more detailed plan of actions. Also, one of the managers, Joy, had experience of working in Hong Kong, so she suggested giving the office there more independence. Therefore, due to the constructive discussion, they were able to come up with a set of practical recommendations.
Benefits of Diversity
The diversity of the team members is one of the key factors that enhance the group performance. This team is made up of people with different backgrounds, personalities, values, and ideas. It allows addressing the existing issue more comprehensively as each team member influence others (Chatman, Sherman, & Doerr, 2015). To what one might consider as insignificant, another member draws special attention. This task is not ordinary, thus it requires creative approaches. Diversity among the managers improves the creativity of the team as a whole. Also, different personality types lead to constructive conflict (Fernandes & Polzer, 2015). For example, Stephen overtly disapproved of Tom’s idea about adapting an existing training program. Such conflicts push discussion forward, making other members suggest more innovative schemes. Therefore, diversity directly and positively affects the overall performance of the group.
Diversity and Ultimate Recommendations
The main goal of this meeting was to design recommendations that would help to create a more cohesive office in Spain and Hong Kong. All members suggested different ideas based on their work experience, education, and personality types. Tom wrote all suggestions on the board to discuss them more carefully and avoid missing potentially valuable ones. As diversity boosts creativeness and productivity, there are much more chances that ultimate recommendations will be successfully implemented by specialists in Spain and Hong Kong offices. Also, the diversity among the team members leads to a more comprehensive consideration of existing barriers, and thus, the managers could discuss a greater number of opportunities that eventually might enhance the cohesion in these offices.
In conclusion, the diversity among the team members is a positive factor as it improves the overall performance. Different background and experience allow suggesting fresh ideas and discussing them more carefully. The presented case clearly demonstrates the benefits of cooperation among diverse specialists. Therefore, it increases chances for making practical and effective decisions.
Chatman, J. A., Sherman, E. L., & Doerr, B. M. (2015). Making the most of diversity: How collectivism mutes the disruptive effects of demographic heterogeneity on group performance. Web.
Fernandes, C., & Polzer, J. (2015). Diversity in groups. Web.