That means, it not only includes the traditional categories of race and gender, but also people with disabilities, gays, and lesbians, and other non-traditional categories considered having “diversity of thought” or those from different disciplines, college degrees, socio-economic backgrounds, etc.It was Rev. Martin Luther King Jr. who inspired the concept of diversity when he advocated that people should be judged by their character, not by the color of their skin. This propelled lawmakers to come up with laws that provide equal opportunity to all (Mor Barak, 2000). These laws have been designed to protect anyone from being discriminated against by reason of sex, marital status, ethnic or national origin, color, race, nationality, age, disability, religion, and different terms of employment, including pay for jobs of equal value. “Equal opportunity” is a means by which a person receives equal access in society. “Equal opportunities approach” is premised on the principle that all people can avail of certain rights or privileges such as education, employment, health care, or other welfare services without any discrimination or any preference whatsoever.Different organizations now apply various equal opportunity practices, which consist of a number of means used to provide fair conditions for all their members in the process of employment and work (Equal Opportunities, 2006). This current trend of the embracing of diversity has given birth to the concept of “the inclusive workplace”. Mor Barak (2000) defines it as one that:“values and uses individual and intergroup differences within its workforce. cooperates with and contributes to its surrounding community. alleviates the needs of disadvantaged groups in its wider environment. and collaborates with individuals, groups, and organizations across national and cultural boundaries” (pp. 339-340).
Motivating a Highly Diverse Group in a Work Setting