Human resource professionals from California to Nebraska to New Jersey are aware of the challenges and opportunities the increasing numbers of immigrants, people of color, and women in the labor pool and the workplace hold for our human resource strategies. Creative approaches to meeting the needs of employees of diverse ages, backgrounds, and lifestyles are becoming a hallmark of the human resource profession.
The ten strategies highlighted here are designed to help SHRM chapter presidents, board members, and diversity committees enhance their efforts to recruit diverse professionals into the SHRM membership and leadership ranks. The strategies have been gleaned from research into corporate recruitment practices and the approaches that many of our chapters and other associations have used to diversify their membership to more closely reflect the demographics of their potential membership pool.
The Challenges of Recruiting Diverse Members
Chapter diversity is not an automatic corollary of demographic change. Unfortunately, several factors discourage potential members from joining an organization, including:
Guidelines for Achieving Diversity
Achieving diversity requires a strategic effort. The following ten guidelines are designed to simplify the process and help chapter leaders create a member base that reflects the diversity of their communities and the profession. As you study these guidelines, bear in mind that the specific approach your chapter takes must reflect your particular demographic goals. While you may feel your chapter membership does not reflect the population of male human resource professionals in your area, others may be concerned with a lack of representative ethnicity or realize that the majority of professionals in their chapters are over--or under--the age of 40. Tailor your goals to your chapter and your demographic environment and keep them in mind as you review the following strategies.
Conclusion: Making Diversity Work
Above all else, as you seek to recruit, retain, and involve a diverse membership, take special care to model the principles of diversity that are key to the success of any organization. These include:
Ten Strategies for Achieving a More Diverse Membership was developed for SHRM in part by Sondra Thiederman, president of Cross Cultural Communications, a cultural diversity training firm. She is the author of several books on workplace diversity and has been a trainer, speaker and author on the topic for more than 15 years. She can be contacted at: Cross Cultural Communications, 4585 48th Street, San Diego, CA 92115, 1-800-858-4478, Fax: 1-619-583-0304.
Contact Your Regional Team | Contact SHRM | (800) 283.SHRM (7476)
SHRM provides content as a service to its readers and members. It does not offer legal advice, and cannot guarantee the accuracy or suitabiity of its content for a particular purpose.
Volunteer Exchange | Technical Help