Leading a Multi-Generational Workforce

Subject: Business
Type: Analytical Essay
Pages: 7
Word count: 1911
Topics: Human Resources, Management, Time Management


The contemporary business environment is changing along with the growth witnessed in every sector (Lieber, 2012). One of the transformations pertain to the diversity of the workforce, which in turn alters the environment of the business organizations. In this context, it has been identified that the demography of the American workforce has transformed dramatically. In the earlier years, the workforce consisted mostly of white-skinned men who were the only income-earning individuals of the households. However, in the modern era, the workforce reflects diversified workers which includes individuals irrespective of their gender, religion, race, as well as various cultural background (Subramaniam and Jaeger, 2010; Victoria, 2017). These employees enable the company to improve its performance by bringing different ideas to enhance the efficiency (Prado, 2015). These benefits emerging from the diversified workforce are required to be utilized successfully by the managers of the companies (Henry and Evans, 2007). Moreover, the traditional leadership theories need to be altered in line with the differentiated workforce of the contemporary era. 

The purpose of the paper is to identify the issues associated with the diversified workforce of the modern era. The paper discusses the issues witnessed by the leaders to manage the varied workforce of the sportswear industry in order to enhance the profitability of the company. Moreover, the several leadership theories, which can be utilized by the managers of the companies to mitigate the issues imposed by the diversified workforce are depicted in the paper. 


The individuals working in the modern business environment find themselves working with diversified colleagues. The conflicts among the diversified workforce are primarily due to the inability to accept the varied perspective associated with those (Ogbonna and Harris, 2006). The several issues related to diversified workforce are common among mostly all the industries across the globe including the sportswear industry. Some of the issues pertaining to workforce diversity are listed below (Greenberg, 2017; Ingram, 2017b; Renee, 2017).


The employees of the companies in the sportswear industry are often identified to be prejudiced which leads to lack of respect for the colleagues. The employees might get discriminated in the workplace on the basis of their race or gender (Bedi, Lakra and Gupta, 2014). These aforementioned causes result in animosity among the employees, which is harmful for the environment of the workplace as well as the productivity of the firm. 

Lifestyle Acceptance

The personal views as well as choice of lifestyle must not affect the professional life of the employees. However, it has been identified that issues among the staff of the sportswear industries. This distressed business environment results in low morale among some of the employees, which in turn affects their performance. 

Ethnic and Cultural Difference

The employees possess pre-determined ideas about the colleagues associated with their cultural, ethnicity, as well as religious views. This can cause conflicts among the employees, which creates serious issues in the workplace of the companies operating in the sportswear industry. 


The workplace of the sportswear industry comprises of several women employees driven by the increase in the literacy rate associated with them. This scenario was not witnessed by the employees in the earlier years and thus, the leads to discrimination of the female employees in a company. The disputes among the male and female employees of the firms result in serious issues for the managers. 


A diversified workforce in the organizations can result in harassment of the employees, which lowers the morale of the employees. Harassments are also recognized to increase the stress and anxiety among the employees of a firm. This can cause serious mental trauma, which reduces the productivity of the employees. 


The diversified workforce in a sportswear industry might speak in languages, which cannot be comprehended by the rest of the employees. This can cause problems when such employees work in a team. The lack of communication among the team members leads to reduced productivity of the firms. 

Generational Gaps

One of the key differences among the employees in the workforce of the modern era is the generational gap among the employees. The workforce consists of the baby boomers as well as the millennials. The employees who belong to the two generations possess varied views as well as ideologies. They also have differentiated priorities as well as style of working. This creates conflicts among the employees which in turn lowers their ability to successfully accomplish their tasks. 


The modern era exhibits acceptance of the employees who have physical disabilities but at the same time, such candidates are talented. However, these employees face challenges in the workplace due to discrimination as well as harassment from their colleagues. This results in conflicts and low morale of the physically disabled employees. 

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Resistance to Change

The employees of the sportswear industry are unable to accept the colleagues who possess varied cultural background. The differentiated style of accomplishing an assignment of a worker might not be accepted by the traditional employees of the company. 

Policies of the Companies

Several companies of the sportswear industry have different policies. The managers of the firms need to understand the requirements of the company and select the diversified workers. If the employees of the companies are not able to be in line with the strategies of the organization, then the benefits received from the diversified workforce will be diminished. 

Integration Issues

The modern workplace environment exhibits diversified working culture, which requires social integration. The employees tend to create small social groups according to their background. This creates imbalance in the environment of the workplace owing to the informal division of the staff of the same firm. This can adversely impact the sharing of knowledge among the diversified employees. This aforementioned scenario reduces the productivity of the companies. 

Solutions to the Issues of Diversified Workforce

The various issues as well as challenges faced by the company driven by the diversified workforce must be mitigated in order to utilize the advantage provided by it. The managers of the firms can take the assistance from the several leadership theories, which are developed to provide solutions for the aforementioned issues of the organizations. The methods as well as theories that can be used by the leaders of the companies participating in the sportswear industries are listed below:

Assessment of Diversity in the Workplace

The companies, which has successfully managed the diversified workforce, are identified to evaluate as well as assess the diversity process. The managers of the company must conduct a survey in order to identify their job satisfaction. This will assist the company to address each of the issues faced by the employees. 


The managers of the organizations require to develop training programs to motivate and encourage the employees to accept the colleagues from varied backgrounds. The attitude of the employees must be altered by efficient leadership skills. 

Transformation and Transaction leadership

Transformational leaders manage the workforce, which is undergoing an alteration in the organizational process in order to achieve a vision shared by all the stakeholders of the company (Hargis, Watt and Piotrowski, 2011). In case of issues associated with diversified workforce in the companies of the contemporary era, a firm requires to achieve less conflict among the employees coming from differentiated background. Therefore, transformational leadership theory will assist the firms to achieve the objective of possessing diversified employees (Ingram, 2017a). This theory of leadership enables the managers of the organizations to establish a team of workers, which is collaborative in nature. The leaders motivate the team members to communicate efficiently among each other. The linguistic issues witnessed by the workforce can be mitigated by the leaders by appointing multilinguistic translator. Furthermore, a transformational leader will assist the employees of the sportswear industry to achieve the goals by providing rewards to the employees who perform better as well as by penalising the staff who fail to accept the diversified workforce. Moreover, transactional leadership theories will also help the senior executives of the firms to motivate the employees to perform better. This leadership theory has motivated the employees to perform better by overcoming the present crisis witnessed by it. 

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LMX leadership 

The leader member exchange theory emphasizes on the efficiency of the two-way communication among the leaders as well as followers of an organization (Kang and Stewart, 2007). The rationale behind the establishment of the theory is that the leaders tend to be biased towards certain employees (Wang, et al., 2005). The leaders favour the employees who possess similar attributes such as the leader himself do (Management Study Guide, 2017). These specific relationships among the employee and the leaders enable them to manage the diversified workforce by establishing a mutual relationship associated with trust and mutual benefit. 


This theory depicts that the ability of the followers to take orders from the leaders plays a significant role while managing the issues emerging from diversified workforce in the sportswear industry. Followership enables the employees to accomplish the tasks given to them by following directions from the leaders (Popper, 2011). The ability of an enterprise to perform better depends on the followership of the employees. The leaders will only be able to mitigate the organizational issues if the employees are willing to listen to them. The leaders will train the staff to accept the diversified culture and background of the workforce. They will also motivate the employees to identify the benefits of establishing a cordial relationship with the varied workforce. However, it depends on the followers to alter their attitude and improve their relationship with the colleagues (Uhl-Bien, et al., 2014). Moreover, the capability of the workers to judge the business environment will assist them to accept the views as well as ideologies of the diversified workforce. The ethical values of the employees will also enable them to accept the employees from differentiated cultures and religion. Furthermore, the ability of the followers to manage their ego while working with the varied employees also plays a crucial role in the process of their acceptance of the colleagues (McCallum, 2013). Besides, the discretion of the employees associated with the prejudices will assist them to establish a cordial relationship with the colleagues. 


The diversified workforce enables the companies to gain competitive advantage in the dynamic business environment. The fresh ideas enable the companies to produce unique products as well as improve the operational activities. However, the diversified workforce leads to the emergence of several issues associated with conflicting views. It is very crucial for the employees to embrace the new practices of the staff in order to avoid conflicts in the workplace. The prejudices of the employees hamper the working environment of the firms, which in turn deteriorates the performance of the firms. The senior executives of the companies must strategize measures to mitigate the issues pertaining to the diversified workforce in order to utilize the benefits emerging from the same. There are several driving factors, which lead to the organizational problems related to the diversified workforce.  The identification of these issues are important for the managers of the firms. The extensive research of the environment of the workplace is required for undertaking measures to address them. The traditional leadership theories must be altered and utilized to provide solutions for the same. It must be noted that the innovative ideas to address the issues emerge from a diversified workforce. Furthermore, the companies in the recent times operate globally. Therefore, differentiated culture and values of the employees will assist the organizations to capture the market share associated with all the culturally varied consumers.

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