Culture & Diversity

Each workplace has a culture. It is created by the personalities who work in it. Each person has beliefs, values, attitudes and behaviours which differ and make us a diverse group. (Hence, diversity – more of that next week)

The way we behave affects everyone we come into contact with and the reasons we each behave in certain ways is determined by our own lily pond ( more of that next week, too)

So, in our workplace culture, what is acceptable behaviour? Please read on

But before that….

When we were seven, all the girls had a gang on the school playground. Everyone except Amy. At playtimes, we used to shout to each other ‘Don’t touch Amy – she stinks’. Amy used to cry every day. One day she just stopped coming to school. No-one ever told us why.

Things we say at work

Which of the following are OK -and which aren’t?

Said in public in front of the person

  • Someone got out of bed the wrong side this morning
  • You shouldn’t take everything so seriously
  • We’re only having some fun – lighten up
  • When you were off last week, the atmosphere here was much happier
  • You’re paid to work, not to come up with ideas
  • You’re new here, we’ve been a team for a long time
  • You three go and have tea, bring me one. Agatha can sort her own out
  • We don’t expect you to understand – just do it

Said about someone, in public, behind their back;

  • She thinks she knows it all
  • Don’t ask her, she’ll bite your head off
  • Ask him, and take him a cup of tea to keep him sweet
  • I don’t like her
  • We don’t like her
  • She keeps herself to herself – thinks she’s above us all
  • Don’t bother making her one
  • She doesn’t fit in, does she?
  • If she worked the same hours I do, then she could complain
  • She’s put a few pounds on
  • She should leave her troubles at home, like the rest of us

Now, what if all that was said about the same person – is that still OK?

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