When it comes to discrimination in the workplace, it can be difficult to ferret out root causes. Much of what we see in statistics on the levels of women and minorities on corporate boards, or in executive positions, is the result of long-term systemic discrimination, as opposed to specific actions of individual decision makers. These issues have been going on for a long time; they’re systemic.
Women are often faced with a bit of a conundrum in the workplace: failing to show confidence and assertiveness can leave them behind when it comes time for handing out promotions and recognition. At the same time, women who do show some level of assertiveness are sometimes perceived negatively by their colleagues, particularly relative to men exhibiting the same characteristics.
Unfortunately, despite their best efforts to attract, engage and hire diverse employees who reflect their market realities, many organizations miss the boat when it comes to creating an inclusive environment in which these staff members will survive and thrive.
We’ve often said that putting traditionally underrepresented groups in positions of authority within organizations can be a huge boost to a company’s success by bringing in diverse perspectives and backgrounds and – among other things – being able to speak effectively to broader markets. However, diversity and inclusion don’t necessarily mean that consumers will flock to your brand just because someone who looks like them came up with some new ideas. Case in point: “Lady Doritos.”
Inclusion means not only having diverse people around for the sake of diversity. It means actively engaging them to bring them into the decision-making and brainstorming process.
Millennials may seem like a relatively new addition to the workforce to some, but as early as 2015, they made up a full one-third of the American workforce, when they overtook baby boomers to claim the largest share by cohort, according to Pew Research Center. What’s surprising about that figure is the fact that many employers are challenged to fully understand this group. They’re often seen as job-hoppers, disengaged and lacking the work ethic of earlier generations.
The issue: lack of understanding leads to disengagement.
A recent story has emerged in the world of fashion that illustrates that promoting diversity and inclusion isn’t as straightforward as it might seem.
Unconscious bias is one of the most daunting challenges facing proponents of diversity and inclusion. We’ve come a long way from the days of blatant stereotypes permeating the recruitment process, let alone the days of intentional and outright policies against hiring people based on race, ethnicity, gender, religion, etc. And while it’s certainly not the case that conscious discriminatory stereotypes don’t exist, the bigger
The gender pay gap—the difference between median male and female yearly earnings when looking at full-time, year-round workers—is one of the most recognizable impacts of gender discrimination. There are many reasons given for this gap.
Workplace discrimination remains a significant problem for a large segment of the workplace, according to recent data. Regardless of policies that may be in place to prevent gender discrimination, the fact that many women perceive discriminatory behavior towards women in the workplace should cause concern for business leaders. With women making up close to 47 percent of the workforce, businesses risk alienating and missing out on potential star employees if their workplaces are seen as less than welcoming to women.