Social Issues / Successful Management Of The Diverse Workforce
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Autor: anton 01 November 2010
Words: 1512 | Pages: 7
When a person thinks of diversity in the workforce, they think of cultural differences. In most cases that is true but diversity in the workforce can be many things not just cultural differences. Dictionary.com says that diversity is the fact or quality of being diverse; difference and a point or respect in which things differs. We are going to look at the diversity of a job facility for the developmentally disabled adult. Working in a job facility for the developmentally disabled (DD) adult has diversity that you would not find working in a regular job. There are federal and state regulations that have to be followed and there is continues training for the employees of the facilities on how to work with the clients on a daily basis. There is also training on how to deal with the emotions of the clients.
I. Diversity in the workplace
According to sacsconsulting.com, The United States is a "melting pot". Our American backgrounds are richly diverse. We each approach the world differently and our personality reflects our background. These diverse worldviews spill over in the workplace and can cause troublesome issues! The U.S. Department of Labor has found that 51% of conflicts and confrontation in the workplace are due to employees and employers not accepting or understanding individual differences. With an adult job, facility for the DD if the staff and the company as a whole do not accept that each DD adult is different and has a personality different from someone else there will be conflict and the conflict could lead to abuse. These reasons are why in an adult job facility for the developmentally disabled there is a lot of diversity that goes into making it run. There is the board of directors, the president, site coordinators, job developers, and regular staff. The Board of directors decide if it is feasible to open more day faculties or not to. Susan the president of Phoenix Alternative Incorporated (PAI) an adult job facility for the DD has been working in the DD field for 32 years. Susan has seen it all she has seen the demise of the institutes and the conception of PAI where she is the president in 1989. According to the company web site, it states that Leadership is provided by the Board of Directors and the president, who set the agency's overall direction. The programs continue to diversify to meet the growing need for person-centered services. The president of PAI is also the mediator between the company and the board of directors. Susan also makes sure that all of the state regulations are passed down to the different site directors and that the policies of PAI are presented to the site directors in a timely manner so that they can be instituted quickly. If state regulations are not followed, PAI could be fined and or shut down permanently then the DD people would have to find a new job facility.
The site directors take the information that Susan has given them and they make sure that all the state and PAI policies are followed. The site directors head a group of staff to go over accidents or incidents of clients and make suggestions to remedy things so it will not happen again. According to a personal interview with Denise, a site director at a PAI DD job facility on December 8 2004 the diversity in her site is enormous. She said that the DD Clients were all from different ethnic background and religious background. It causes problems at times between the different clients and the staff because a client may not like this client or staff member. The site directors delegate to the different department heads who are called coordinators. Coordinators make sure that everything in their departments run smoothly and without to much incidents. PAI has a job developer that takes care of getting jobs for the sites and jobs out in the community for the DD. The DDs at the different sites are DDs that have high service needs and high matinence needs. Some cannot even talk or walk. Some can only stare into space. The turnover rate for staff that works with the DD on a one on one bases is very high. It does not mater the nationality of the staff some just cannot handle working with the DD. It takes a special type of person and that makes that person different.
II. Health and Wellness in the workplace
The staff needs to have training to work with the DD. There is first aid and C.P.R. that is a state requirement. There is also ongoing training that is required each year but there is so many that there is not enough room to mention it all. One of PAIâ€™s requirements is to read the DD clients Isps and Behavior plans. For the DD clients to be able to come to the job facility the clients need to have yearly or bi-yearly medical checkups. Each day the staff does cares, which toileting is, and during this time, the staff makes sure that the DD clients are not hurt or have any abrasions on them.
PAI offers to its staff paid time off (PTO) health insurance if the staff wants it and is willing to make monthly payments for it. It also gives to the staff short term disabilities after PTO is used up. To get PTO the staff has to be full time and they get so many hours a week for working 40 hours a week.
III. Non-monetary rewards in the workplace
The non-monetary rewards for the PAI job facility for the DD is an awards banquet for the staff put on by the president of PAI and the board of directors. AT the banquet, the staff receives peer recognition and awards for doing a great job. They also have a reward for doing the dumbest things in the company like locking your keys in your car three days in a row or shredding the mail ECT.
The best non-monetary reward that is at the job facility is that the DD clients love you and they are concerned about you when you are sick or on vacation. Denise the site director for one of the sites for PAI told me that one of the clients went home for Thanksgiving and his mom had a heart attack and he was worried about her and started to yell. He yelled (he cannot make sounds except for grunttal sounds) for a while before the neighbors realized that there was something wrong and called 911. If this client had not been home his mother would have died. He saved her life because he loved her and was worried about her. Linda a staff with PAI who is out on short-term disability told me â€œI got phone calls and lots of card and there was a lot of excitement when I came to visit them while out on disability. The clients have so many people come through their lives that they think you might not come back and when you do, they are so happy. I was out for five weeks and everyone was so concerned and called and sent cards to me.â€
One thing that is exciting for the staff is when they see growth in the clients that have previously not shown improvement. When the DD clients learn new jobs in the job facility or out in the public workforce they get so excited and they tell everyone that they meet. It is also a personal victory for the staff when they see a client they have been working with learn new things.
According to Continental Connection Steven Volman says that Individuals with developmental disabilities (DD) are vulnerable to the same mental disorders and dysfunctions as the rest of the population. In fact, it could be argued that, due to greater susceptibility to various negative experiences, they may be even more likely to experience trauma and environmental stressors. In addition, coping skills may be limited. When a person thinks about it, you realize that the human nature is to turn up our nose at the clients and the people that work with the DD. We do not take into account that the people have to have special feelings for the DD and have patience for the clients. It takes a diverse staff and company to work with the different personalities of the clients. Where one client does not get along with one staff, they will get along with another staff member. According to Volman, it is neither productive nor accurate to solely attribute the mental disorder to the actual functioning intelligence level. The different intelligence levels of the clients make for a diverse work experience and whoever chooses to work with the DD needs to be prepared for change in their lives.
Diversity in the Workforce. (N.D.). Sacs consulting & Investigation Services, Inc. Retrieved December 8, 2004. From http://www.sacsconsulting.com/diversity.htm
Phoenix Alternatives Inc.
Phoenix Alternative Inc. (n.d.). History of Our Company. Retrieved December 8, 2004. http://www.phoenixalternatives.org/PAI%20History.htm
Volman, Steven M., PsyD. (2003). Working With Developmentally Disabled Clients. In Continental Connection. Retrieved December 8, 2004, from http://www.chnpartnerships.com/provider_info/CHN-NewsletterSpring2003.pdf#search='working%20with%20disabled
Phoenix Alternatives Inc.
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