VOICE May 2016 - page 1

Voice
Issue 29
May 2016
In this article Karen Frost and Sonia Belfield come
together to explore their understanding about
unconscious bias, what it is, how it affects leaders,
what you can do to counteract it and how to manage
it in multi-cultural teams.
To begin with we think we need to explain what it is
and why it is important for us as leaders to be aware
of our own unconscious bias. At its most basic, it’s
the decisions that we make every day on an
unconscious basis when it comes to what we think
about others. We all hold natural biases, it’s a part of
human nature and in the workplace, and this means
that we can sometimes behave towards a person in a
certain way that is based on that bias.
These are our natural people preferences and they
are hard-wired into our brains on a neurological
level. It can be best described as each of us
categorising people we meet then routinely and
automatically sorting them into groups. This often
overrides rational and logical thinking and it’s not
something that we can typically help. Whilst most of
us would hate to think that we’re basing our
decisions about people on stereotypes, we actually
do so purely on instinct.
These are also exaggerated when we’re stressed,
angry or frustrated and these are the danger
points when it comes to the workplace.
Naturally, not many people like to admit to being
biased against someone due to disability, gender,
nationality and or age. However, research shows us
that it is what all of us do to a greater or lesser
extent.
Clearly as leaders it is not helpful if we do too much
of this sorting into groups. In a world where strong
leadership shows very little bias, especially to
different national cultures and behaviours, it is
important that we self-reflect on our own biases,
Unconscious Bias
Karen Frost and Sonia Benfield discuss
our unconscious biases, how they can
impact the workplace and how we can
consciously overcome these.
Centre for Teams Blog Share—How
to be Trustworthy
David Webster, Managing Director of
Centre for Teams talks about trust and its
importance in the workplace.
Book Review
John Frost reviews ARC Leadership by
Richard Boston. ARC stands for Authentic,
Responsible and Courageous and in this
book Richard Boston explores these three
key aspects of leadership in a pragmatic
and open way.
Healthy
Leaders:
Eating
for
Performance
Joanne Hart offers insight and tips on
healthy eating and how this will benefit
you as a leader and your team.
Final Thoughts...
Developing Inspirational Leaders
CONTENTS
Unconscious Bias and
Business Impact
“We all hold natural biases, it’s a part
of human nature and in the
workplace, and this means that we
can sometimes behave towards a
person in a certain way that is based
on that bias.”
1 2,3,4,5,6,7
Powered by FlippingBook