Monday, October 25, 2010

Workplace 2.0: Capitalizing on Workplace Diversity

On October 12, NCSLA hosted the “Workplace 2.0: Capitalizing on Workplace Diversity” event at the Duke Conference Center at Perimeter One in Morrisville, NC. Guest speaker, Barbie Keiser, discussed the importance of diversity in everyone’s lives. Keiser is an Information Resources Management consultant from the Washington DC metro area. She has 25 years of experience in library administration and library education.

Keiser began the presentation with a discussion of the word “Diversity” and its importance in society, especially in the workplace. She explained that diversity can be differences in culture, demographics, or capital knowledge. To illustrate diversity in capital knowledge, Keiser used social networking as an example. There are people who use social networking everyday while others rarely, if ever, use it. Keiser suggested employers can close the knowledge gap by capturing knowledge. The military uses this technique to help with the transition between new and retiring employees.

Keiser suggested using diversity to foster innovation in the work place. With technology changing the way people work, Keiser encouraged participants to recognize diverse working styles in order to get people to work better together. She also encouraged the audience to get a better understanding of working with other cultures. In a diverse work environment, Keiser stressed the importance of learning the different work styles, work ethics, and needs of employees.

The event was attended by seven NCSLA members who generated a great informal discussion about diversity in the workplace.

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