Implicit bias training may be flawed

On Behalf of | Jan 21, 2020 | Workplace Discrimination |

Large companies such as Google and Papa John’s have used implicit bias training in an effort to make their organizations more inclusive. However, there is some question as to whether their employees in New Jersey and throughout the country actually benefit from it. Research has shown that attempt to teach people about their biases may actually work to further affirm their views. Ultimately, implicit bias training may only be effective if people want to learn about stereotypes and how to overcome them.

There is also some question as to whether it’s possible to determine a person’s implicit biases. One test revealed that people who had racist tendencies behaved in much the same way as those who didn’t show them. Telling a person who hasn’t acted in an overtly racist manner that he or she could still be a racist may not be the best idea.

Some believe that it may be more effective to alter a person’s behaviors as opposed to his or her thoughts. It is not uncommon for workers to be nice to their colleagues or otherwise act in a positive manner even if they aren’t doing it for altruistic reasons. It may also be more effective for company’s to focus more on creating inclusive policies than trying to force people to think or feel a certain way about their fellow humans.

Individuals who face harassment at work because of their gender, national origin or religion may wish to pursue legal action. It is generally illegal for an employer to subject an employee to any behavior that could constitute a hostile work environment. These behaviors could include jokes at a worker’s expense or anything else that could cause mental anguish or otherwise make it difficult to focus on doing a job well.

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