Training a Diverse Workforce

March 09, 2016 | 1236 Views

Training a Diverse Workforce

Jeffrey Drozdowski

Manager, National Training | Little Caesars

In 1776, artistic consultant Pierre Eugene du Simitiere suggested the adoption of the U.S. motto “E Pluribus Unum” (“Out of Many, One”). The original meaning of the phrase was that out of many colonies rose a great nation. However, in recent years, its meaning has evolved to suggest that out of many peoples, races, religions, languages and ancestries has emerged a single people and great nation, illustrating the concept of the melting pot.

The workplace makeup is changing, and quickly. According to the U.S. Census Bureau, workplace makeup includes gender, race, ethnicity, age and religion. There are other factors that fall under the category of diversity in the workplace, including culture, sexual orientation, and physical and mental abilities and challenges. In addition to these areas, the workplace has a new group that is the largest category of the overall workforce: the millennials (ages 18 to 34).

There are many types of diversity indices used to measure the makeup of our population. For our purposes, we will use The USA Today Diversity Index developed by Phil Meyer of the University of North Carolina and Shawn McIntosh of USA Today, who created the Index in 1991. It measures the probability that any two people chosen at random from a given census area are of different races or ethnicities.

In 2010, the chance the next person you met was of a different race or ethnicity was 55 percent. By 2060, the index predicts that it will be 71 percent. You may already be experiencing this diversity; if not, you soon will be.

In the chain restaurant business, we have seen a great influx of employees from all over the world. In some U.S. markets, there are teams in which English is not the primary language. It’s important for leaders to know when language barriers necessitate updating training programs to help the trainer and the employee.

THE PRESENT AND THE FUTURE

Read complete article in the Spring 2016 issue of Training Industry Magazine (pages 28 to 31).

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