Purpose of the Study
The purpose of the study is to evaluate the employees’ perceptions of diversity in the workplace. It will entail examining the effects of diversity perceptions on job satisfaction in Canadian-based companies. Various researchers attest that the employee’s perception of diversity in the workplace is directly linked to job satisfaction. A satisfied worker shows improved performance that contributes significantly to the accomplishment of the organizational goals. Therefore, companies should measure the contentment of the employees based on their perception of workplace diversity since it is essential for productivity.
The perception of diversity in the workplace has been seen in terms of gender, position, and ranking due to the deployment of employees who come from different ethnic backgrounds. Although the modern human resource management strategies have ensured the smooth running of global businesses owing to diversity, many challenges are still encountered. One of the primary challenges that are experienced in the global business environment is discrimination because of poor understanding and appreciation of different cultures. A sizeable gap is evident in the employment disparities that exist in companies that operate on both at the national and global levels (Laatikainen & Smith, 2006).
Although various companies in Canada appreciate the embracement of diversity in the workplace, various questions remain unanswered. For instance, how do individuals of different languages and cultures share a common goal, understanding, and knowledge about their interactions? How can such people develop trust amongst themselves? How do the employees perceive such interactions while at work? Do these employees get satisfied owing to the existence of diversity? What kind of solutions do companies have in place to successfully satisfy them? Such questions among others need to be addressed since they form the basis of the challenges that arise from the management of employees concerning their viewpoints on diversity and satisfaction.
Communication among divers employees can greatly improve their interactions in different working environments (Herdman & McMillan-Capehart, 2010). Current technology has resulted in the development of robust communication means that have promoted the bonding of employees from diverse origins. Nowadays, teams can establish and conform to momentous collaborations owing to the increasing appreciation of each others’ differences in aspects such as languages, race, and color among others. However, there is still a need to exploit the varied opportunities that arise from the employee perceptions of diversity and job satisfaction. Matters such as perception of workplace diversity, cultural differences, gender, and race have not been fully addressed in most companies. They are the defining basis of the employees’ negative perception of multicultural environments (Piccoli, Powell, & Ives, 2004).
Organizations are currently characterized by fast development teamwork comprising employees from diverse cultural and geographical. If such aspects are not handled effectively, they can cause problems such as conflicts, disunity, and mistrust among employees. This situation can result in job dissatisfaction. The differences can further be heightened due to the failure to realize the significance of cultural diversity and appreciation of different personalities among others (Piccoli et al., 2004).
The acceptance, appreciation, and development of a positive attitude towards diversity among the employees can only be achieved by the embracement of proper communication, approval of cultural diversity, and creation of collaboration based on apt communication channels. Piccoli et al. (2014) attest that the acceptance of employee diversity ensures improved satisfaction at work. The collaboration among the employees is enhanced through the recognition of diversity, especially when they come from different cultural backgrounds. This set of circumstances promotes the perception of workplace diversity by enabling the employees to identify and appreciate various values, beliefs, and attitudes among other aspects of their colleagues (Geister, Konradt, & Hertel, 2006). The researchers solely limited their studies to team motivation without embracing other factors such as workplace diversity that have a significant influence on job contentment.
According to Nishii, Lepak, and Schneider (2008), motivation promotes the development of attention, confidence, relevance, and individual satisfaction. However, the research holds that enthusiasm only serves as a solution to managerial problems that are associated with work teams rather than examining the effects of other elements such as cultural diversity about its effects on job satisfaction. It proves that there is limited information on the evaluation of employee perceptions of workplace diversity and its effect on job satisfaction in Canadian companies.
Research Objectives, Questions, and Hypothesis
- To evaluate the employees’ perception of workplace diversity in Canadian-based companies.
- To highlight the effects of diversity on the employees’ job satisfaction in Canadian-based companies.
- To examine various techniques used by companies in Canada to promote job satisfaction.
- Do the perceptions of employees of workplace diversity promote their work satisfaction in Canadian-based companies?
- How can employees develop trust among one another by promoting their perceptions of diversity in the place of work?
- How do employees perceive interactions in the workplace?
- Do the employees get satisfied due to the existence of diversity?
- What kind of solutions do companies have in place to successfully satisfy their employees?
- H0: Employees’ perceptions of workplace diversity do not lead to job satisfaction among workers in companies located in Canada.
- H1: Employees’ perceptions of workplace diversity do lead to job satisfaction among workers in companies located in Canada.
Limitations, Delimitations, and Assumptions of the Study
Limitation and Delimitation of the Study
The study will only focus on the evaluation of employees’ perception of workplace diversity and its effect on job satisfaction in Canadian-based companies. It will be limited to a qualitative research design and analysis. The results will focus on the awareness of embracing diversity in the workplace to ensure employee satisfaction rather than the implementation of other motivational techniques such as offering tokens or money. As a result, the findings will deliver results depending on the generalization of the available information.
The increasing diversity of employees has currently presented numerous opportunities and challenges to companies in Canada (Kochan et al., 2003). Various theories of social psychology and organizational behavior provide the framework for understanding the aspects of perceived diversity and its effects on the satisfaction of the employees. The social identity theory elaborates that people group themselves into distinct categories with shared characteristics such as demography, culture, and preferences among others. Perceived discrimination arises from such groupings based on the development of the negative perception of diversity (Ellemers & Haslam, 2012).
Many authors analyze this concept based on both the personal and organizational dimensions. According to Ellemers and Haslam (2012), most employees perceive workplace diversity in an unenthusiastic way where they feel treated unequally based on their gender, culture, sex, and identity among others. Furthermore, such people can feel angry, displeased, and alienated. This state of affairs brings about employee dissatisfaction. Other considerations that are included in the social identity theory include the environmental contexts and individual feelings as elaborated in the intergroup theory. An intergroup theory postulates that individual and organization levels exist in every organization (Bigler & Liben, 2006; Ellemers & Haslam, 2012). The individual’s group includes the personalized viewpoints on the similarities that arise due to demographic characteristics that entail ethnicity, race, and age among others. On the other hand, the organizational group includes the opinions of an employee in the performance of similar tasks, hierarchical status, duties, and/or functions among others (Bigler & Liben, 2006). The theories ensure that employees value the relationship with the organization, fellow workers, and supervisors. Such issues are managed well through the encouragement of affirmative diversity perceptions amongst the workers.
Employees’ Perception of Workplace Diversity
Employees’ perception of diversity and job satisfaction is based on the behavior of the management of the organization. In such situations, the management must ensure proper issuance of directions to the employees in an attempt to improve the effectiveness of the organization (McKay, Avery, & Morris, 2008). This state of affairs plays a significant role in the determination of perceptions and attitudes of employees towards workplace diversity, which results in their improved satisfaction. Employee contentment leads to brings about increased enthusiasm that prompts them to improve the quality of services offered by the company. Workers who have positive perceptions of workplace diversity remain motivated; hence, they tend to embrace teamwork in an attempt to deliver high-quality work (Robbins, Judge, Millett, & Boyle, 2013; Ellemers & Haslam, 2012).
According to Robbins et al. (2013), job satisfaction can either be positive or negative depending on the viewpoints of the employee in the job environment. When the motivation is derived from money rather than other means such as a positive perception of diversity, job productivity is achieved. However, such employees fail to get satisfied. Research conducted by Robbins et al. (2013) identified that most employees get satisfied with money, promotional promises, and increment of good salaries among others. Although this research embraced job satisfaction, it failed to highlight the employees’ perceptions of workplace diversity as a source of job satisfaction.
The perception of workplace diversity can affect the relationship amongst the employees, management, fellow workers, customers, and any other person who is directly or indirectly linked to the organization. An off-putting perception of others due to diversity differences in aspects such as race, gender, and sex among others can result in workplace conflict. Negative perceptions can also bring about jealousy among the employees, especially those who hold lower positions in the organization. These perceptions can cause work dissatisfaction that eventually leads to reduced productivity (Robbins et al., 2013).
Understanding the employees’ perception of diversity is important since such knowledge can help solve issues related to discrimination. Contrastingly, poor understanding of the perceptions of diversity can affect the key areas of human resource management such as recruitment, the culture of the organization, the relationship among employees, and compensations among others. Discrimination can happen in situations where women and/or minority groups are disadvantaged. This situation can cause dissatisfaction with their performances. Managing employees with different perceptions of diversity in a company are hectic. Therefore, it is necessary to train them to control their emotions towards the embracement of diversity in the workplace in an attempt to improve job contentment (Robbins et al., 2013).
Job satisfaction can be perceived as an employee’s sense of achievement. According to Kaliski (2007), job satisfaction is directly related to productivity and personal wellbeing. It entails work enjoyment and rewarding of one’s efforts. Satisfied employees remain enthusiastic about their jobs. This situation results in self-fulfillment (Kaliski, 2007). Motivation has been deemed efficient in addressing issues that arise from the management of employees. Individual enthusiasm is an aspect that enhances morale and liveliness in companies that embrace diversity. The satisfaction of employees is promoted through motivation with a view of alleviating the problems that emanate from an entity (Holton, 2001). Enhancing inspiration by upholding motivation amongst employees from different cultural backgrounds helps in solving the problems of cultural misunderstanding that are associated with diverse perceptions of diversity (Holton, 2001).
Cifuentes and Murphy (2000) posited that other factors such as attention, confidentiality, motivation, and relevance among other components improved the satisfaction levels among the employees. This underpinning led to a conclusion that embracing such factors appropriately can improve a person’s engagement in working groups whilst promoting a positive perception of the differences in cultures that exist within the organization. Individual perception of various beliefs of the ability to achieve personal goals is significantly improved where organizations encourage motivation and autonomy that promotes satisfaction (Cifuentes & Murphy, 2000). However, the researchers did not highlight the perception of diversity as a source of satisfaction amongst the employees in Canadian-based companies.
Good leadership is another aspect that has underpinned the development of positive perceptions that leads to the satisfaction of employees. According to Vecchio (2002), leadership in the organization ensures the definition of clear goals and roles in an attempt to realize a quality outcome. McCarty Kilian, Hukai, and Elisabeth McCarty (2005) revealed that leadership helped in the efficient management of employees in organizations where diversity inclusion was highly regarded.
Although the highlighted studies have elaborated the sources of employee satisfaction, none of them is clear on sound leadership and management that focuses on diversity inclusion by considering their perceptions of workplace diversity as a source of job satisfaction. Concerning the topic, this study evaluates the employees’ perception of workplace diversity and its effect on job satisfaction.
Justification of the Study
Contemporary organizations need to remain aware of the need to understand the diversity perceptions at various levels of employment. Given the minimal information on employee perceptions of diversity and its effect on employee satisfaction in companies based in Canada, there is a need to develop other means to motivate employees to ensure their satisfaction.
Methods and Sampleneeds
Research Design and Sampling Plan
Since the study focuses on the evaluation of employees’ perception of workplace diversity and its effect on job satisfaction in Canadian-based companies, the research will entail a qualitative research design (Mahoney, 2010). It will be conducted in various companies in Canada. Managers of the selected companies will be identified to seek contact information that will be useful in the facilitation of the research. Data will be obtained from questionnaires that will be administered to the employees of the selected companies in Canada.
The sample size selected will include 12 companies that will provide 100 respondents each. The respondents will be selected using the quasi-sampling method. Questionnaires will be administered randomly to avoid cases of bias. They will then be submitted online as agreed with the respondents through the selected companies (De Choudhury et al., 2010).
Self-administered questionnaires and interview schedule tools will be used in the collection of data. Both tools will be structured to capture details of the companies and the personal information of the respondents. It will have closed, open-ended, and multiple-choice questions. The respondents will be expected to understand both instruments since they will be written in simple English (Cooper & Emory, 2002).
The rationale for the Selection
Canada was selected as the study area because the country has many companies with employees from diverse cultural backgrounds. The country is also well known for its immigration of employees from other countries; hence, workers who have experienced workplace diversity will be easily identified for inclusion. This situation will set a framework for evaluating the employees’ perception of workplace diversity and its effects on job satisfaction. The chosen sampling design is also appropriate since the study will focus on qualitative data.
Data Analysis for Demographic Variables
The demographic variables that will be considered in the study include age, education, experience, and cultural background of the employees among others. The variables will be analyzed using the univariate analysis or tables. The results will be compiled using SPSS version 21. The univariate analysis will indicate details about age distribution frequencies, central tendencies (mean, mode, and median), and dispersions such as range, standard deviation, and variance (Bradley et al., 2007).
Data Analysis for Study Variables
The research will be based on the following hypothesis.
- H0: Employees’ perceptions of workplace diversity do not lead to job satisfaction among workers in companies located in Canada (Mahoney, 2010).
Inferential statistics will be used to elaborate the inferences from the study. Necessary tests required for the study will be conducted to indicate more elaborative information (Bradley et al., 2007).
Validity and Reliability
The Pearson Moment Correlation (PMC) will be included for testing the validity of the existing questionnaire. A mark of 0.5 R-value will be set for validity while the reliability of the questionnaire will be measured using the Cronbach’s Alpha at 0.5 (De Choudhury et al., 2010).
Ethics for the Research
This research will be conducted after seeking permission from various companies that will be selected for the study. The respondents will be issued consent forms to participate in the study willingly. Upon their acceptance, they will be engaged in the research (Miller, Birch, Mauthner, & Jessop, 2012).
Operational Definition of the Key Terms
Employees’ perceptions are employees’ observations, ideas, and viewpoints on a situation, condition of work, and/or environment that can either be negative or positive in the workplace (Kochan et al., 2003).
Workplace diversity entails building a task force or workforce without discrimination based on age, gender, color, race, and/or ethnic background. Companies that embrace such techniques of employment have greater benefits due to the availability of employees from diverse backgrounds (McKay et al., 2008).
Job satisfaction refers to individual contentment with an activity or work (Kaliski, 2007). It is deemed to affect the person’s productivity either positively or negatively.
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