For years it has been clear that people make decisions every day that impact some groups more negatively than others: decisions about hiring, about purchasing, about promotions, about job assignments. More and more we are discovering that most of these decisions are not made by bad people with bad attitudes, but rather by well-intended people who have no idea about the unconscious process that they use to make decisions about people who are different from them.
We all have Bias
The traditional view of these patterns of discriminatory behavior in organizations is that these actions are conscious. In this oversimplified formulation, people who know better do the right thing, and those who don’t have overt bias. As a result, we have developed a “good person/bad person” paradigm of diversity. A more accurate depiction, however, is that we all have bias of one kind or another. It is not restricted to one or a few select groups of people.
Our white paper, ReInventing Diversity, provides a roadmap for companies looking to create a new set of distinctions through which we can view the challenge and the opportunity that diversity presents to us in the 21st century.
Cook Ross is considered to be the thought leader in the practical application of academic research of the unconscious to organizational diversity efforts. This presentation explores a number of strategies that will help create workplace cultures in which employees can actively “unconceal” perceptions and patterns that have been hidden.
Unconscious Bias can impact the way businesses:
Recruit people • make hiring decisions • conduct interviews • mentor employees • make job assignments • distribute training opportunities • make promotional choices • communicate with colleagues • give performance reviews • decide organizational policy • conduct marketing campaigns • choose board members • treat customers