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How to Recruit & Hire a Diverse Workforce. Vallerie Maurice, Director Multicultural Diversity & Assistant to the Chancellor LSU AgCenter. Pathway to Diversity 10/91 Pathway to Diversity Reaffirmed 10/93. The Emphasis on Diversity in the Cooperative Extension System.

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how to recruit hire a diverse workforce

How to Recruit & Hire a Diverse Workforce

Vallerie Maurice, Director

Multicultural Diversity &

Assistant to the Chancellor

LSU AgCenter

pathway to diversity 10 91 pathway to diversity reaffirmed 10 93
Pathway to Diversity 10/91Pathway to Diversity Reaffirmed 10/93

The Emphasis on Diversity

in the Cooperative Extension System

Extension’s EMPHASIS ON DIVERISTY addresses the many dimensions of diversity that are already a feature of the mosaic society present in our Nation, states, and territories. Its mission is to achieve and sustain pluralism as an integral part of every aspect of Extension: mission and vision; work force; programs; audiences; and relationships with other people, groups, and organizations. Many organizations have a diverse work force and diverse program audiences—but are not necessarily multicultural organizations. The EMPHASIS ON DIVERSITY is designed to move Extension to being a multicultural organization that values diversity and pluralism.

(Pluralism is defined as an organizational culture that incorporates mutual respect, acceptance, teamwork, and productivity among people who are diverse in the dimensions of human differences listed above as diversity.)

eeo aa and the emphasis on diversity

Government initiated

Legally driven

Problem/prevention focused

Focus on program and employment neutrality

Assumes assimilation



Extension initiated

Productivity/effectiveness/relevance driven

Opportunity focused

Focus on work and program environment and the use of work force skills

Assumes pluralism


EEO/AA and the Emphasis on Diversity


toward a multicultural organization
Toward a Multicultural Organization

Recruiting and Hiring a more diverse work force as current staff leave or retire.

Developing, training, and evaluating methods to assist current staff in their efforts to work with diverse programs and audiences.

Developing reward and recognition systems that acknowledge staff at all levels who provide affective educational programs for diverse audiences.

business case for diversity
Business Case for Diversity

Focusing on diversity and looking for more ways to be a truly inclusive organization – one that makes full use of the contributions of all employees – is not just a nice idea; it is good business sense that yields greater productivity and competitive advantage.

(Society for Human Resource Management)

business case for diversity key factors
Business Case for Diversity - Key factors
  • Diversity Initiatives can improve the quality of your organization’s workforce and can be the catalyst for a better return on your investment in human capital.
  • Capitalize on new markets; client bases are becoming even more diverse than the workforce
  • Recognized diversity initiatives and diversity results will attract the best and the brightest employees to a company
  • Increased creativity
  • Flexibility ensures survival

(Society for Human Resource Management)

business case for diversity questions
Business Case for Diversity - Questions
  • What are the demographics of your client base? (e.g. age, income, gender, education, ethnicity, etc.)
  • How many languages are spoken by your clients?
  • How much does employee turnover cost your institution?
  • How much does your institution spend annually on recruitment?
  • How much have discrimination/harassment suits cost your institution in the past year (in both legal fees and settlements)?
  • How frequently does intergroup conflict arise?
  • Is there a high level of turnover among certain employee groups?
  • Are your policies and benefits attractive to potential diverse recruits?
  • Is your organization losing top talent because people do not feel valued, included or heard?
  • Do all employees feel that their talents and skills are well rewarded?
  • Is there some career advancement possibility for employees and a focus on developing people internally?
  • Is diversity reflected in your procurement policies and among your suppliers?

(Society for Human Resource Management)

People gravitate toward people like themselves.

People hire people like themselves.

Everyone looks for someone they believe fits into their community.

Do small communities change much over time?

Can people learn to tolerate others overtime?

important steps to diversity recruitment and hiring
Important Steps to Diversity Recruitment and Hiring
  • Culture of the Institution
  • Perception of the Institution
  • Recruitment of Diverse Applicant Pool
  • Preparing the Search Committee
  • Preparing Stakeholders
  • Preparing the Faculty and Staff
  • Actual Hire – Acclimating the New Hiree
  • Mentoring
culture of the institution
Culture of the Institution

Is the institution culturally competent?

Does your organization reflect the cultures of all employees and potential employees?

Is the language inclusive?

Don’t make assumptions!

perception of the institution
Perception of the Institution

Public perception of a good organization is an important intangible asset. This is also true of its perception by minority communities. What is the perception of your organization in these communities? Does your institution embrace these communities?

recruitment of a diverse applicant pool
Recruitment of a Diverse Applicant Pool
  • A positive perception of your institution aids in the recruitment of a diverse applicant pool and sets the foundation to recruit the best and the brightest
  • Consistent interactions with minority communities is a necessity.
  • Utilize all minority institutions
  • Utilize local, state and national organizations and web sites (e.g. MANNRS)
  • Offer student internships
  • Brochures, etc.
preparing the search committee
Preparing the Search Committee
  • Policies/Procedures
  • Culturally Competent
  • Seriously consider needed requirements (e.g. disciplines of students, etc.)
  • Review and seriously consider changing demographics
  • Screen all minority candidates
preparing stakeholders
Preparing Stakeholders

When hiring someone of a different background, the county and surrounding counties will receive calls and questions as to the abilities of the new and different person. People can be fearful. It is our responsibility to educate and use our influence to acquire assistance from stakeholders to create a successful diversity hire (of the best and the brightest).

preparing the faculty and staff
Preparing the Faculty and Staff
  • Policies/Procedures
  • Expectations – everyone must help the new person.
  • Positively greeting new hirees
  • Lobby/Building set-up (e.g. brochures, magazines)
  • 75 words/phrases most important to know (e.g. Spanish language, etc.)
  • (Be tenacious!)
actual hire acclimating the new hire
Actual Hire – Acclimating the New Hire
  • Discuss Policies/Procedures – written and unwritten
  • Provide constant names for all key areas in which employee will have contact (e.g. accounting, etc.)
  • Provide mentors
  • Introduce to key stakeholders
  • Create a formalized Mentoring Program
    • Use persons of color if at all possible
    • If not, use culturally competent individuals who want to mentor
    • Identify secondary mentors
    • Provide leadership training opportunities to all
    • Review the progress from both the mentor and mentee