The first portion of the book is designed to help members of the workforce empathize with those from minority cultures. It covers topics such as culture, beliefs, myths, stereotypes, and discrimination.
As claimed in the book's introduction, Ms. Olver and Mr. Baugh believe that the solution to the diversity divide lies with members of the majority and minority alike. Later chapters encourage people to step outside their comfort zone, become less resistant to change, connect through similarities, and celebrate differences.
"It's not a one-sided process," Ms. Olver explains. "It takes the majority and minority – both sides – to understand each other. It's up to the majority to take the first step, but we also want to empower (minorities) to improve their situations."
The authors pull from their experiences in multicultural situations to provide background on each topic in the book. The final chapters offer tips on hiring, retaining, and inspiring a diverse workforce.
Ms. Olver is the founder and director of Coaching for Excellence, LLC, a Chicago-based professional training, coaching, and consulting company. Mr. Baugh is director of Baugh Training & Consulting. He served as the diversity management trainer for United Airlines and has been a professional trainer for employability issues and career development since 1982.
MINORITY RULES: Turning your Ethnicity Into a Competitive Edge
Kenneth Arroyo Roldan has watched many talented minorities leave corporate life disillusioned and burned out after only a few years. The CEO of the nation's leading recruiting firm that specializes in placing minorities believes minorities are not prepared, culturally or psychologically, for corporate America, so he and writer Gary M. Stern offer Minority Rules: Turn Your Ethnicity into a Competitive Edge.
Instead of feeling dejected, Mr. Roldan says minorities should think strategically about their career. He advises readers on how to navigate the complex landscape of a multinational corporation and make it to the top. He also stresses the importance of finding a mentor and learning the art of networking.
"Success at a corporation doesn't happen by itself," says Mr. Roldan, CEO of the recruiting firm Wesley, Brown & Bartle. "It's not created by spontaneous combustion. It's planned, focused, and targeted."
Mr. Roldan also explains why engaging in corporate politics is necessary to any executive's ascent and why performance is the key factor to succeeding.
"For minority employees, who face stiff competition from their majority counterparts who may be better connected and hail from the right schools, it means overcoming all of the hurdles that come with growing up 'different' in the United States," he says.
Minority Rules covers such topics as "Turning your ethnicity into a competitive edge" and "What HR can do to level the playing field." Mr. Roldan also gives tips on how to avoid being "pigeon-holed" into specialty practice areas, such as ethnic marketing.
Al Zollar, an African-American manager of a business in affiliation with IBM, offers the story of his rise through the ranks of a corporation, bolstering Mr. Roldan's claim that anything is possible for the employee who is willing to work hard, have gumption, and be strategic.
The main thrust of Mr. Roldan's Minority Rules is to show minorities how to climb to the top jobs and keep them.