Diversity Management

What Is Diversity Management?

“Diversity management is the strategy of using best practices with proven results to find and create a diverse and inclusive workplace. Successful strategies link diversity progress directly to business results. Best practices include effective use of employee resource groups, diversity councils, mentoring and sponsorship, and supplier diversity.”  (DiversityInc.com, Diversity Management 101)

AAAED members increasingly have Diversity Management as part of their responsibilities.  As a result, AAAED has introduced a Diversity Management training curriculum.  See the PDTI catalog at http://www.aaaed.org/images/aaaed/PDTI%20Catalog.pdf for more information about courses and course credits available for the Sr. CAAP credential.

This Diversity Management section contains information about emerging trends in diversity management including best practices. 

For more information, click here

Implicit Bias Video Series

It’s important to diagnose bias in the workplace because stereotypes can introduce errors in managers’ decision making about their employees in hiring, valuations of performance, assigning high visibility projects, and giving credit for contributing in groups (VMware Women’s Leadership Innovation Lab, 2019).

According to “A Methodology to Diagnose Bias,” some conditions that lead to a higher likelihood of bias are 1) when the criteria for decision making are ambiguous, 2) when the environment is “male-typed” (stereotypically male professions), 3) when there are narrow definitions of success, 4) and when there is high levels of managerial discretion.

Check out the implicit bias video series to further understand biases, stereotypes, and strategies for countering implicit bias.

Provided by BruinX, UCLA’s Office of Equity, Diversity and Inclusion.

Preface: Biases and Heuristics
Lesson 1: Schemas
Lesson 2: Attitudes and Stereotypes
Lesson 3: Real World Consequences
Lesson 4: Explicit v. Implicit Bias
Lesson 5: The AIT
Lesson 6: Countermeasures

Smith, Christie, and Yoshino, Kenji, “Fear of Stifling Talent,” Harvard Business Review, 2014. https://hbr.org/2014/03/fear-of-being-different-stifles-talent

This article discusses the phenomenon of “covering,” which is when people downplay their individualistic differences from what’s generally accepted. After conducting surveys, “covering” shows to decrease employees’ confidence and engagement, and also holds minority employees back. Thus, managers who want to create a diverse workplace should aim to eliminate the pressures to conform (Kenji Yoshino and Christie Smith, 2014).

Schwarz, John. “The real reason we’re not seeing more progress on diversity at work,” Fast Company, 2019. https://www.fastcompany.com/90433914/the-real-reason-were-not-seeing-more-progress-on-diversity-at-work

This article highlights why there continues to be a lack of women, people of color, LGBTQ+ and those with disabilities in leadership roles and executive positions despite the implementation of diversity and inclusion programs. The author argues tracking diversity should go beyond access to pay, promotions, and training to include the cumulative effect of smaller daily interactions, like time spent with managers, invitations to social events, access to information, or simply casual talk in the office kitchen with colleagues. Gathering data and analytics to uncover what’s happening in these interactions can allow businesses to create and implement solutions that will actually generate growth within their diverse employees (John Schwarz, 2019).

Leung, Andrew. “Strategies for Including Women of Color in Workplace Planning,” DiversityInc., 2020.  https://www.diversityincbestpractices.com/a-sophisticated-approach-when-considering-women-of-color-in-your-workplace-planning-strategy-a-presentation-by-dr-stephanie-creary/

Dr. Stephanie Creary explains, - “while many companies have developed robust diversity, equity, inclusion and belonging strategies over the years (practices such as professional development programs, mentoring and sponsorship programs, employee resource groups and training managers to be more effective at coaching a wide variety of people including WOC), what many companies fail to do is to follow-up and measure their effectiveness.”
Another key point Creary explains about allyship, - “There needs to be a concerted effort of changing WOC’s experience for the better, whether it’s giving support and constructive feedback that she needs to succeed; always advocating for her, especially when she’s not in the room; and (literally) including her in the conversation.”

Inclusive Excellence Framework in Higher Education

  • An approach to sustain and increase diversity directly linked to teaching; a way to foster an inclusive classroom environment.
  • An inclusive excellence model should address: 1) access and equity, 2) campus climate, 3) diversity in curriculum, 4) student learning and development

How to create a welcoming campus and classroom environment:

  • Making Course Curriculum More Inclusive
    • Making the course content more inclusive by including different racial and ethnic perspectives.
    • Use scholarship and materials developed by people of different backgrounds and perspectives.
  • Accommodations
    • Acknowledge students with disabilities that may require academic accommodations.
    • Consider particular religious holidays that may require some students to miss class or require them to receive other accommodations due to their religion.
    • The class syllabus should recognize the need for these accommodations and provide information on how to request them.
  • Overcoming Microaggressions
    • Microaggressions are everyday verbal or nonverbal remarks that communicate hostile negative messages to target people based on their marginalized group membership (race, gender, sexual orientation, disability). They have a negative impact in the classroom environment.
      • Example: A white student clutches their backpack tightly as a Black of Latino passes by them. --- Hidden message: You and your group are criminals and dangerous.
    • Overcome microaggressions by becoming alert of your biases and fears, seeking a more balanced perspective of historically marginalized groups, and taking personal action to call our microaggressions of others and yourself.
  • Establish Ground Rules
    • The instructor in collaboration with students should set “ground rules,” or a code of conduct, to help foster a positive classroom environment and address learning needs.
    • Rules can create a safe learning environment for students where they feel like they can share their ideas and be respected.
    • Introduce ground rules early in the semester, ask students for feedback, remind the classroom of ground rules before discussing a sensitive topic.

Fix Your Climate: A Practical Guide to Reducing Microaggressions by Kathryn S. Young and Myron R. Anderson & their Webinar for AAAED Members

What are some obstacles to improving your campus climate and how can one realistically remove them or improve them within their sphere of influence?

  • The biggest obstacle in improving campus climate is not having a strategy in place to address the barriers of students. Ask yourself - what do our students need for them to thrive?
  • Collect data AND act on that data
    • Conduct campus climate surveys
    • Consider solutions to issues BEFORE they start to surface. This should be integral to the structure of the campus.


Association of American Colleges and Universities (AACU) - Inclusive Excellence Framework:

American University of Washington working towards inclusive excellence:

Cornell University: Inclusive Teaching Strategies:

Cornell University: Establishing Ground Rules:

Diversity in the Classroom:

University of Michigan: Inclusive Teaching Principles, Strategies & Resources

University of Denver: Microaggressions in the Classroom:

Additional Reading:

Moreno, José F., Daryl G. Smith, Alma R. Clayton-Pedersen, Sharon Parker, and

Daniel Hiroyuki Teraguchi. “The Revolving Door for Underrepresented Minority Faculty in Higher Education.” Association of American Colleges and Universities (2006), https://irvine-dot-org.s3.amazonaws.com/documents/123/attachments/insight_Revolving_Door.pdf?1416807317

Why Diversity Programs Fail.” Harvard Business Review (2016), https://hbr.org/2016/07/why-diversity-programs-fail  

Designing a Bias-Free Organization.” Harvard Business Review (2016), https://hbr.org/2016/07/designing-a-bias-free-organization

Mary Ann Danowitz & Frank Tuitt. “Enacting Inclusivity Through Engaged Pedagogy: A Higher Education Perspective, Equity & Excellence in Education.” Equity and Excellence in Education, 44:1, 40-56 (2011), http://dx.doi.org/10.1080/10665684.2011.539474

Research addressing harassment and sexual violence that occurred in connection with remote learning/Covid-19:

Holland, Kathryn J., Lilia M. Cortina, Vicki J. Magley, Arielle L. Baker, and Frazier F. Benya. "Don’t let COVID-19 disrupt campus climate surveys of sexual harassment." 117 Proceedings of the National Academy of Science 24606-24608 (2020), https://www.pnas.org/content/pnas/117/40/24606.full.pdf

Xue, Jia, Junxiang Chen, Chen Chen, Ran Hu, and Tingshao Zhu. "The Hidden Pandemic of Family Violence During COVID-19: Unsupervised Learning of Tweets." 22 Journal of medical Internet research e24361 (2020), https://www.jmir.org/2020/11/e24361/

Bennett, Esther R., S. Snyder, J. Cusano, S. McMahon, M. Zijdel, K. Camerer, and C. Howley. "Supporting survivors of campus dating and sexual violence during COVID-19: A social work perspective." Social work in health care (2021): 1-11, https://www.tandfonline.com/doi/pdf/10.1080/00981389.2021.1885566?casa_token=K3OdhYClWlAAAAAA:-TGd0eGP28BIbHCe97RI4pv3jG1mzvwgsBmBTQxPVAif_e656KMW1RC3fiOlQPQTPpVSHU1H0NOW

Whitford, Emma. “Insurance Costs on the Rise for Colleges.” Higher Education, July 2020. https://www.insidehighered.com/news/2020/07/08/pandemic-has-exacerbated-hard-insurance-market-higher-ed


Catalyst: Workplaces that Work for Women 
Career Advice from Higher Education Recruitment Consortium
Hispanic Association on Corporate Responsibility (HACR)
Media Diversity Institute
National Employment Lawyers Association (NELA)
Society for Human Resource Management (SHRM)
Women Employed