Prejudice in Organizations

In: Business and Management

Submitted By lebmfk
Words 672
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Prejudice can be described as a word which is derived from the Latin word Prae Judicium meaning ‘to try in advance’ (Clawson et al: 1990). Prejudice happens when we pre-judge individuals on first encounter about their character or appeal. Most individuals who are prejudiced are usually rigid in their prejudices and their beliefs are unsubstantiated. Prejudice can create serious tension in an organization because it has the potential to strain interpersonal relationships in a workplace. People can practice prejudices in various forms. Some of the areas of potential prejudice could be gender, race, age, religion, sexual orientation, ethnicity and physical disabilities.

Prejudices can be systematically dealt with in the workplace. I work for one of the United Nations (UN) agencies. The UN has noted and is mindful of potential prejudices that can exist in the workplace, especially that the workplace is made up of employees from various countries, backgrounds, ethnic groupings, varying religious beliefs (including atheists), sexual orientation, races and as an organization, The organisation has a very diverse workforce.
This diversity has not been ignored. The UN has taken deliberate steps to introduce workplace policies that encourage tolerance amongst employees and in turn, tolerance in the communities in which we serve. The policies are part of the orientation package for every new employee who joins the UN. There are Executive Directives (EXDs) that are issued and reviewed on an ongoing basis. In the current directive, disagreement between a staff member and supervisor is not considered as prejudice. The policies are clear on the definition of prejudices and also on the consequences of perpetuating the vice.
If I were to be found in a work environment where prejudices are rife, I would first of all admit that prejudices are real and we all have some form of…...

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