The case study illustrates how Xerox has used diversity to gain a competitive advantage. The company combines minorities with different skills, backgrounds and, skills to develop a more successful workforce. It creates a strategic advantage that leads to innovation and flexibility. One key tool that Xerox uses is the Black Caucus Network. In this group, African American executives teach management classes to other minority workers and give them insight into how they can be successful in the workplace through practical examples. The minority workers also train and support each other informally through mentoring. The content of the sessions can range from work-related issues to personal advice. Despite the success of these programs in general fields, the company has not made much inroads in technical areas due to the scarcity of minorities in such fields. To that end, the company is encouraging the majority workers to foster deeper ties with minority workers and train them. Due to this, Xerox is seen favorably among minority groups and is encouraging minority to joint the organization as they can receive adequate support in it.
Current Diversity Programs
Xerox is currently viewed as one of the most progressive companies in the world due to its diversity programs. The company has an Executive Diversity Council that convenes several times a year to discuss matters centered on work environment, workforce representation, diverse customer segments, and develop strategies aimed to increasing diversity within the organization. The company has expanded its Black Caucus Network to not only meet the needs of African American’s, but also those of people from other American groups, military veterans, and gay, lesbian, transgender, and bisexual people. The company has placed an increase level of focus on the advancement of women at the workplace through the formation of The Women’s Alliance (Rice, and Embrick, 35). Xerox has also embarked on a program called corporate champions which attaches senior executives to caucus groups to enable open communications about the prevailing work environment to make it more inclusive. Other groups include YP Nexus, Xerox Innovation Women’s Council, Winning Ways, and Everywoman Network. Overall, the company has significantly expanded its diversity program to widen their reach and make the company to be more inclusive and conducive to minorities.
Employee Training in Xerox’s Programs
The caucus groups collaborate with management to achieve mutual self-advocacy and common business objectives by teaching minority workers the factors that drive Xerox and inform them about key processes. The Corporate champions programs teach minority workers how to be more active at the workplace and increasingly take part in the decision-making process (Doyle 67). Further it helps to train future leaders at the organization and places emphasis on self-starters. The other groups enabled the development of professional networks which facilitate training through webinars, online tutors, interviews, and workbooks with seasoned professionals to give other workers insight into their professions.
As the generation of the workforce is changing, I suggest that Xerox develops a program centered won the development of the Millenials and Generation Z. The age of Baby Boomers at the workplace is reaching its climax and it is important that the organization ensures that this generation passes their key insight and positive work relations to the upcoming generations to create a spectrum of continuity at Xerox. Such programs would ensure that Xerox’s diversity programs are sustainable and lead to even greater success in the future.
The Pros and Cons for having Separate Self-help groups for Minorities
- The self-help groups help people form minority groups to have confidence in their skills as they can practically see what other people from their groups are achieving at the workplace.
- The groups give workers a sense of belonging and this enables them to express themselves in a meaningful and decisive way.
- The groups foster self-advocacy in minority workers this they become champions for advancement of their rights at the workplace.
- They give minority workers a chance to bond with people whom they share the same cultural characteristics with thus enabling them to get closer to Xerox as organization in its entirety.
- The separate self-help groups may create a sense of seclusion as a certain group may not mind the welfare of others.
- The groups may advocate for their own rights thus creating bias thus leading to contempt between the groups.
- The groups work on different ideologies and this may lead to increased conflict at the workplace.
Diversity and Human Resources
I believe that diversity programs such as those at xerox should be a key constituent of the human resource department in all organizations since such programs are key to a company’s success. The world is becoming increasingly globalized and embracing diversity is important to an organization’s success (Rice 105). Such programs will enable the die semination of diverse ideas leading to better strategies based on innovation and creativity.
The case study clearly illustrates that Xerox is a frontrunner across the world in the creation of a diverse workplace. Its programs have enabled the company to create more inclusive workplaces and this has increased bottom line. Not only is the organization seen in positive light by the public, it is also able to attract the best talent thus making it a market leader.
Doyle, Elizabeth. Identifying Best Practices for Gender Diversity in Leadership Roles in the Workplace. Diss. Ohio University, 2015.
Rice, Mitchell F., and David G. Embrick. “Diversity ideology in the United States: Historical, contemporary, and sociological perspectives.” Diversity and public administration. Routledge, 2015. 32-51.
Rice, Mitchell F. “Workforce diversity in business and governmental organizations.” Diversity and Public Administration. Routledge, 2015. 104-127.