There's been a lot of talk about the term "implicit bias" with recent police shootings and on the campaign trail, but such talk may have left many people wondering what that term really means. If you're one of them, check out NPR's excellent explanation of where the term originated. http://www.npr.org/search/index.php?searchinput=implicit+bias
"understand the ways in which you might
be biased without even realizing how you think
about other people"
Basically, implicit bias is the idea that we all have unconscious belief systems that may drive our actions and lead to unintentional discrimination. If you're a manager or executive, you obviously want to avoid acting in ways that would be discriminatory and the first step would be to understand the ways in which you might be biased without even realizing how you think about other people.
What Should You Do?
There are a number of tests that you can take on your own, with confidential results, to test your own unconscious biases. One of the best is the Harvard Implicit Bias Test,
Some diversity and inclusion consultants recommend such tests for a group going through diversity and inclusion trainings. While we've done such work, we're cautious about recommending this, because of various legal concerns, so consult your legal counsel before doing any such group work.
Your individual results, however, can be very useful in allowing you to understand your own actions and help ensure that you don't act out of bias with those you lead.
Did You Know?
Our own diversity and inclusion work always includes a discussion on implicit bias and may include individual and group work on implicit bias tests, depending upon what results the client wants.
For more information, call or write us at: 303-216-1020 or [email protected]
Be sure to read Lynne's helpful books on affirmative action and sexual harassment.