Skip to main content Accessibility help

IDADA: The individual difference approach to assessing and developing diversity awareness

  • Charmine E J Härtel (a1), Günter F Härtel (a2) and Rick B Trumble (a3)


This paper outlines a new approach to cultural awareness training, the Individual Differences Approach to Diversity Awareness (IDADA). IDADA is distinguished from other approaches in three ways: (a) it eliminates the need to characterise cultures, (b) it addresses unfair discrimination of any kind (e.g., weight, height, attractiveness), (c) it teaches employees to become aware of how their attitudes affect organisational performance, and (d) it focuses on job requirements. Initial evidence supports the validity of the model. The paper also introduces a new measure of diversity-openness called the Ideal Employee Inventory. Preliminary reliability and validity evidence for the measure is provided.


Corresponding author

Corresponding author:


Hide All
Allport, G. W. (1954). The nature of prejudice. Cambridge, MA: Addison-Wesley.
Ayoko, O. B., Härtel, C. E. J., Callan, V. J. (2002). Resolving the puzzle of productive and destructive conflict in culturally heterogeneous workgroups: A communication accommodation theory approach. International Journal of Conflict Management, 13(2), 165195.
Bakker, W., Van Der Zee, K., Van Qudenhoven, J. P. (2006). Personality and Dutch emigrants’ reactions to acculturation strategies. Journal of Applied Social Psychology, 36(12), 28642891.
Bendl, R., Fleischmann, A., Hofman, R. (2009). Queer theory and diversity management: Reading codes of conduct from a queer perspective. Journal of Management and Organization, 15(5), 625638.
Birrell, B., Healy, E. (2008). How are skilled migrants doing? People and Place, 16(1), 120.
Byrne, D. (1971). The attraction paradigm. New York, NY: Academic Press.
Christian, J., Porter, L. W., Moffitt, G. (2006). Workplace diversity and group relations: An overview. Group Processes and Intergroup Relations, 9, 459466.
Devine, P. G. (1989). Stereotypes and prejudice: Their automatic and controlled components. Journal of Personality and Social Psychology, 56, 518.
DIAC. (2008). Population flows: Immigration aspects 2006–07. Edited by Citizenship DoIa. Canberra, ACT: Australian Government Publishing Service.
Dick, B. (1986). Learning to communicate. Brisbane, QLD: Interchange, The University of Queensland Bookshop.
Ely, R. J., Thomas, D. A. (2001). Cultural diversity at work: The moderating effects of work group perspectives on diversity. Administrative Science Quarterly, 46, 229273.
Ensari, N. K., Miller, N. (2006). The application of the personalization model in diversity management. Group Processes and Intergroup Relations, 9, 589607.
Fujimoto, Y., Härtel, C. E. J., Härtel, G. F. (2004). A field test of the diversity-openness moderator model in newly formed groups: Openness to diversity affects group decision effectiveness and interaction patterns. Cross-Cultural Management: An International Journal, 11(4), 416.
Gottfredson, L. F. (1992). Diversity in the workplace. In E. Susan Jackson & Associates (Eds.), Human Resources Initiatives. NY: Guilford Press.
Graves, L. M., Powell, G. N. (1995). The effect of sex similarity on recruiters’ evaluations of actual applicants: A test of the similarity-attraction paradigm. Personnel Psychology, 48, 8597.
Greenwald, A. G., Banaji, M. R. (1995). Implicit social cognition: Attitudes, self-esteem, and stereotypes. Psychological Review, 102, 427.
Gudykunst, W. B., Stewart, L. P., Ting-Toomey, S. (Eds.). (1985). Communication, culture, and organisational processes. Beverly Hills, CA: Sage.
Härtel, C. E. J., Douthitt, S., Härtel, G. F., Douthitt, S. (1999). Equally qualified but unequally perceived: General cultural openness as a predictor of discriminatory performance ratings. Human Resource Development Quarterly, 10(1), 7989.
Härtel, C. E. J., Fujimoto, Y. (1999, August). Explaining why diversity sometimes has positive effects in organizations and sometimes has negative effects in organizations: The perceived dissimilarity openness moderator model. In S. J. Havolic (Ed.), Academy of Management Best Papers Proceedings. Chicago, IL: Academy of Management.
Härtel, C. E. J., Fujimoto, Y. (2000). Diversity is not a problem to be managed by organisations but openness to perceived dissimilarity is. Journal of Australian and New Zealand Academy of Management, 6(1), 1427.
Härtel, C. E. J., Härtel, G. F., Barney, M. F. (1998). Shape: Improving decision-making by aligning organizational characteristics with decision-making requirements and training employees in a metacognitive framework for decision-making and problem-solving. Training Research Journal: The Science and Practice of Training, 4, 79101.
Hay, P., Härtel, C. E. J. (2000). Toward improving the success of change management efforts: Modelling the factors contributing to employee's resistance during change implementation. Management Development Forum, 3(1), 131154.
Ho, D. Y. F. (1995). Internalized culture, culturocentrism, and transcendence. The Counseling Psychologist, 23, 424.
Hobman, E. B., Bordia, P., Gallois, C. (2004). Perceived dissimilarity and work group involvement. The moderating effects of group openness to diversity. Group and Organization Management, 29, 560586.
Jackson, S. E., Joshi, A., Erhardt, N. L. (2003). Recent research on team and organizational diversity: SWOT analysis and implications. Journal of Management, 29, 801830.
Jackson, S. E., Stone, V. K., Alvarez, E. B. (1993). Socialization amidst diversity: Impact of demographics on work team oldtimers and newcomers. In L. L. Cummings & B. M. Staw (Eds.), Research in Organizational Behaviour (Vol. 15, pp. 45109). Greenwich, CT: JAI Press.
Joshi, A., Roh, H. (2009). The role of context in work team diversity research: A meta-analytic review. Academy of Management Journal, 52(3), 599627.
Kulik, C. T., Roberson, L. (2008). Common goals and golden opportunities: Evaluations of diversity education in academic and organizational settings. Academy of Management Learning and Education, 7, 309331.
Liden, R. C., Wayne, S. J., Stilwell, D. (1993). A longitudinal study on the early development of leader-member exchanges. Journal of Applied Psychology, 78, 662674.
Miles, R. H., Randolph, W. A. (1985). The organization game–A simulation: Participant's manual (2nd ed.). New York, NY: Harper Collins.
Milliken, F. J., Martins, L. L. (1996). Searching for common threads: Understanding the multiple effects of diversity in organizational groups. Academy of Management Journal, 21, 402433.
Offermann, L., Gowing, M. (1993). Personnel selection in the future: The impact of changing demographics and the nature of work. In N. Schmitt & W. C. Borman (Eds.), Personnel Selection in Organizations (pp. 385417). San Francisco, CA: Jossey-Bass.
Olsen, J. E., Martins, L. L. (2012). Understanding organizational diversity management programs: A theoretical framework and directions for future research. Journal of Organizational Behavior, 33, 11681187.
Pulakos, E. D., Wexley, K. N. (1983). The relationship among perceptual similarity, sex, and performance ratings in manager-subordinate dyads. Academy of Management Journal, 26, 129139.
Rhuly, S. (1976). Orientations to intercultural communication. Chicago, IL: Science Research Associates.
Roberson, L., Kulik, C. T., Pepper, M. B. (2009). Individual and environmental factors influencing the use of transfer strategies after diversity training. Group and Organization Management, 34, 6789.
Rynes, S., Rosen, B. (1995). A field survey of factors affecting the adoption and perceived success of diversity training. Personnel Psychology, 48, 247270.
Schneller, R. (1989). Intercultural and intrapersonal processes and factors of misunderstanding: Implications for multicultural training. International Journal of Intercultural Relations, 13, 465484.
Sinclair, A. (2006). Critical diversity management practice in Australia: Romanced or co-opted? In A. M. Konrad, P. Prasad, & J. K. Pringle (Eds.), Handbook of workplace diversity (pp. 511530). Thousand Oaks, CA: Sage.
Solomon, J. (1990, September 12). As cultural diversity of workers grows, experts urge appreciation of differences. The Wall Street Journal, B1B10.
Tom, V. R. (1971). The role of personality and organisational images in the recruiting process. Organizational Behavior and Performance, 6, 573592.
Triandis, H. C., Kurowski, L. L., Gelfand, M. J. (1994). Workplace diversity. In H. C. Triandis, M. D. Dunnette, & L. M. Hough (Eds.), Handbook of Industrial and Organizational Psychology (pp. 769815). Palo Alto, CA: Consulting Psychologists.
Tsui, A. S., Egan, T. D., O'Reilly, C. A. (1992). Being different: Relational demography and organizational attachment. Administrative Science Quarterly, 37, 549579.
Van De Ven, A. H., Rogers, R. W., Bechara, H. P., Sun, K. (2008). Organizational diversity, integration and performance. Journal of Organizational Behavior, 29, 335354.
Van Knippenberg, D., Schippers, M. C. (2007). Work group diversity. Annual Review of Psychology, 58, 515541.
Verderber, R. F., Verderber, K. S. (1995). Inter-act: Using interpersonal communication skills (7th ed.). Beverly, MA: Wadsworth Publishing.
Wang, X., Sangalang, P. J. (2005). Work adjustment and job satisfaction of Filipino immigrant employees in Canada. Canadian Journal of Administrative Sciences, 22(3), 243254.
Warr, P., Bunce, D. (1995). Trainee characteristics and the outcomes of open learning. Personnel Psychology, 48, 347375.
Watzlawick, P. (1976). How real is real. New York, NY: Random House.
Zalesny, M. D., Highhouse, S. (1992). Accuracy in performance evaluations. Organizational Behavior and Human Decision Processes, 51, 2250.



Full text views

Total number of HTML views: 0
Total number of PDF views: 0 *
Loading metrics...

Abstract views

Total abstract views: 0 *
Loading metrics...

* Views captured on Cambridge Core between <date>. This data will be updated every 24 hours.

Usage data cannot currently be displayed