chapter  11
20 Pages

Sport organizations and diversity management

Diversity in the workplace The nature of diversity Diversity is defined as a variety, assortment, or mixture. Here we are interested in the nature and impact of a variety or mixture of personnel in sport organizations, and implications for strategic human resource management (SHRM). Cunningham (2007: 6) defines diversity in the workplace as ‘the presence of differences among members of a social unit that lead to perceptions of such differences and that impact work outcomes’ (italics in original). A key element of this definition is that diversity is a perception and thus differences are in the ‘eye of the beholder’. A group of male community sport club coaches may view themselves as very similar because they are all male, or very diverse because some are African-American and some are White, or some are parents of participants while others are not. According to Cunningham (2007: 5), ‘it is the perceptions of being different, more so than the actual differences themselves, that impact subsequent outcomes.’