Leaders in a health or human service agency should be multicultural to be able to deal with people from diverse culture. Whether in a patient-practioner or manager-employee level an individual has to make some efforts to ensure that individuals are handled with respect and care they deserve. Through cultural encapsulating, individuals and practioners classify differences on ethnic diversity of employees and patients. In heath, social and human services to become a multicultural leader one should develop awareness, knowledge and skills to enable him/her increase his/her abilities on offering effective cross-cultural care. When working in a multicultural environment it is important for human service professionals to refrain from constant comparison of their own way of life with individuals from different cultures. By doing this, they establish stereotypes on other cultures putting off effective interactions (Lecca, et. al., 1998, p. 202).
To become a multicultural leader in a health human service agency there are five things one is supposed to do; first to become a multicultural leader, you should try talking slowly pausing between statements. This enables patients to have an opportunity to mentally translate what is being said into their own language. Second you should ask same questions using different methods because individuals are sometimes reluctant in admitting that they don’t understand. As a leader you should ask the same question two or three times to give individual room to understand questions without admitting their language weakness. Third, use of diagrams would be of help if they are used to clarify your instructions. Individuals may fail to understand verbally but this can be made clear using pictures. These diagrams should be drawn carefully and legible. Fourth, leaders should have different meanings to different words for individuals whose common language is not English to understand. Statements should be more specific for it to be more understandable to listeners. Finally, as a leader you should promote feelings of acceptance, respect beliefs, values and practices of patients and employees. This should be achieved through respecting other people’s values, traditions, history and social organizations like community structures (Lecca, et. al., 1998, p. 204).
In conclusion, for one to become a leader in a multicultural health or human service agency s/he should be culturally sensitive on values and biasness on management techniques. One should encourage and create proactive policies. Encourage employment and promotion of minority employees. It is duty for leaders in human services to change their qualities not only for better management of individuals form diverse ethnic and cultural backgrounds, but also to facilitate some change on employees and organization. Cultural competency enables human service professionals to be more successful in providing and advocating for the diverse population they serve.
List of References
Lecca, P. J., et. al., (1998), cultural competency in health, social and human services: directions for the twenty-first century, New York: Garland Publisher.