Diversity: Learning Objectives
how workforce demographics are changing
2. Define “stereotype”
3. Define the three components of “lookism”
4. Describe how attractiveness interacts with the
Pygmalion effect, secondary gains, and attribution
5. Explain the ramifications of Title VII of the Civil
Rights Act…what classes are protected? Which are not?
6. Define bona fide occupational qualification, and its
7. Provide examples of family friendly policies
8. Describe in which states native speakers are likely
to suffer from “accent bias”
9. Define tokenism
10. Define authoritarianism and cognitive complexity
differences that make us unique! Understanding and
appreciating differences helps individuals, communities,
and groups. Things that make each person unique are
biology (physical makeup), ethnicity and culture, family
life, beliefs, geography, and experiences. We all make
judgments about people based on our experience with
them; but, we make judgments before getting to know
them, we “pre-judge” the person (the source of the word
prejudice) or we assume that everyone in a certain group
is the same, we “stereotype” the individuals in that
group. Prejudice and stereotypes hurt everyone whether
they’re negative or positive. People differ in many
ways. For example, cultural background (including
ethnicity) can influence the way people communicate
through: body language, listening, speaking, expressing
opinions, working styles, but cultural background is
only one thing that makes people unique. You can get
more out of relationships by being open about
differences – don’t ignore them, don’t assume
anything—check it out, encourage questions about things
that make you different, develop friendships with people
who are different from you, don’t make someone a
spokesperson for his or her group – nor suggest that the
person is an exception either; don’t tell ethnic or
sexual jokes – even jokes about your own group. REMEMBER
that mistakes happen, especially when people are under
stress. Changing old habits and ways of thinking takes
Source: Hospital Study Guide (1999). Section III, Only the
Human Being, “Diversity,” University Medical Center:
Lebanon, TN. Pg. 6., with permission
longer I live, the more I realize the impact of attitude
on my life. Attitude, to me, is more important than
facts. It is more important than the past,
what other people think or say or do.
more important than appearance, giftedness or skill.
will make or break a company, a church, a home. The
remarkable thing is that we have a choice every day
regarding the attitude we will embrace for that day. We
cannot change the past…We cannot change the fact that
people will act in a certain way. We cannot change the
inevitable. The only thing we can do is to play the one
string we have, and that is our attitude…
convinced that life is 10% what happens to me and 90%
how I react to it.
of the purposes of this content segment is to help you
to examine your attitudes, your biases, your prejudices,
and to expand your cognitive schema***
****Cognitive Flexibility Exercise****
Authoritarianism: tendency to be judgmental,
closed-minded, rigid; “one right way”
Cognitive Flexibility: ability to see issues from
another’s point of view, openness regarding those who
of a number from 1 to 10.
- Multiply that number by 9.
- If the
number is a 2-digit number, add the digits together
Determine which letter in the alphabet corresponds to
the number you ended up with (example: 1=a, 2=b, 3=c,
Think of a country that starts with that letter
Remember the last letter of the name of that country
of the name of an animal that starts with that letter
Remember the first letter in the name of that animal
Workforce of the 1950s
Approximately 29 years old
than twelve years of education
Married to homemaker wives
within their region of birth
with the fastest percentage growth in Hispanic
North Carolina 394%
South Carolina 211%
Source: U.S. Census Bureau
the next 25 years, minority concentrations are projected
to increase in all parts of the country, but especially
in the South, Southwest, and West. By 2025, minority
groups are expected to account for over 50 percent of
the population in four states (Hawaii, California, New
Mexico, Texas) and the District of Columbia.
wealth of information on changing demographics between
1990-2000, check out the U.S. Census Bureau’s web site
http://www.pluralism.org/ for a description of
Harvard University's "The Pluralism Project"
workforce is changing….you may work for someone older,
someone younger, an ethnic minority, or someone of the
four dyads, in which do you think there would be the
most friction? Why?
Syndrome: Because of
statistical discrimination or tokenism, women have
sometimes been described as hypercompetitive with one
another. This phenomenon is however contingent upon the
Ely (1995) found that female
partners in less gender integrated law firms were
expected to act non-aggressively and deferently toward
legislation, admissions policy, hiring practice, etc.,
that demonstrates only minimal compliance with rules,
laws, or public pressure: Admitting one woman to the
men's club was merely tokenism.
Random House Unabridged Dictionary, Copyright © 1997, by
Random House, Inc., on Infoplease
Sometimes, we find that we are in the position of being
what Rosabeth Moss Kanter describes as an “O;” someone
who is in the minority position in a group. “O”ness can
result from a variety of situations.
of O” film
watching the film, think about a time when you felt as
created the situation? How did you feel?
hear the word “diversity” what comes to mind? What are
some dimensions of diversity?
of the Civil Rights Act
discriminate based on sex, race, age, religion, or
national origin. President Clinton added “status as a
parent” to the list.
employers can get around this with the “BFOQ" argument
Fide Occupational Qualification: criterion necessary to
perform the job
examples of its application
include the entertainment, modeling, movie industries;
VII of the Civil Rights Act
discrimination based on height, weight, or facial
appearance – most prevalent form of discrimination, and
most of the time, people do not know what happened
Truth about Beauty: Like it or Not, Looks do Matter
Surprise! Pretty people Earn More.
in some instances “lookism” can be considered
the 3 most important criteria that you look for in a
restaurant experience….would the “looks” of the
wait staff be one of your considerations?
EEOC Sues McDonald’s Restaurant for Disability Bias
against Employee with Facial Disfigurement
Secondary gains: suggests that looks provides a “two-fer;”
in that not only does an employer hire someone who can
do the job, but someone who is pleasant to look at as
individuals grow to behave as they are treated.
Attractive people for example have a “halo” which
implies that everything is good in this “good looking”
Darcy, a former beauty
contest winner working for a major corporation for
two years. This past week, she has made more
errors than the other accountants in her area.
What could be the cause of her mistakes?
Attractive people benefit from external attributions of
negative conditions, and internal attributions of
positive conditions. For example, one may be more likely to
blame an attractive person’s co-workers, working
conditions, or lack of training if that individual's performance is
not up to par, and more likely to attribute good
performance to intelligence, character, motivation, etc.
Ten males were recorded reading the same
45-second passage, which was subsequently rated by human
resource directors and managers. The ten speakers were
from different states: Texas, Georgia, Louisiana,
Alabama, North Carolina, Minnesota, California,
Massachusetts, Illinois and New Jersey (and spoke with
accents common to their region).
Source: HRMagazine, December 2000
Individuals from which states were rated highest in
terms of employment potential?
According to census data, 13 percent of the population
is age 65 and older. By 2030, 20 percent of Americans,
about 70 million, will be over 65. The population age 85
and above is currently the fastest-growing segment of
the older population, growing by 274 percent over the
past 25 years.
Congressional testimony on best practices and strategies
regarding older workers and employment.
Source: HRMagazine, January 2002
some of the implications of an aging population for
and Women in the Workforce
gap between men and women with college degrees has not
closed completely, but the percentages are close. In
2000, 24 percent of women age 25 and over had a
bachelor’s degree or higher, compared with 28 percent of
percentage of women age 16 and over in the civilian
labor force in March 2000 was 61 percent. The percentage
for men was 74 percent.
However, women still account for less than 18 percent of
board members at the largest companies and less than 23
percent of top executives (Krim, 2002).
see how women’s pay stacks up to men’s at
two groups, who makes the most money and receives the
- men with working wives
- men with stay
at home wives $125K
past 30 years (1970-2000) the proportion of those who
never married doubled for women, ages 20 – 24, from 36
percent to 73 percent, and more than tripled for women,
ages 30 to 34, from 6 percent to 22 percent.
are some family friendly policies that employers can
introduce to provide more flexibility for workers?
- Do a webquest, or websearch, on "family
friendly policies;" specifically, "What
some family friendly policies that employers can
introduce to provide more flexibility for workers?"
E.g., see the "StrideRite" example below
- Summarize the main points of your webquest
- Be prepared to share your results with your
teammates on Friday, and to select a
spokesperson from your group who will present these
findings to the class.
initiatives designed to foster inclusion through
Should be championed by