Have you ever considered if your positive prejudices influence who you would collaborate with? Honestly consider, who would your ideal collaborators be below?
As an Accountant?
As a social entrepreneur?
And most importantly, why?
You may assume someone is more capable than they are based on our biases or positive prejudices.
When I was in Kenya, I met up with a 17 years old girl, who was white. She shared with me some of the work she was assisting in while visiting a small rural community outside Nairobi. As the group was looking for solutions to a specific problem, one of the elders of the community sought out this young lady to provide an answer. Why? Not because she had the experience, nor because she demonstrated knowledge in this area, but as she described it, it was because she was white. Based on my experience this was a common perspective in many countries in Africa my husband Mike and I travelled to.
To be completely transparent, this was a smart young lady. It was her that used the term “positive prejudice,” and it was me who felt that accurately depicted a broader issue, so I adopted her term.
The problem with positive prejudice, it can create unrealistic expectations of someone based on our own biases.Positive prejudices, it can create unrealistic expectations of someone based on our own biases. Learn more. #MyContributionCounts #YouMeWeMovement Click To Tweet
Do you demonstrate positive prejudices when someone has any of the below characteristics?
Consider if someone is:
Native English speaker
No speech impediment
Born in the country of residence
No criminal record
Support mainstream political party
…. And not a red-head
Well then, the world is your oyster, or at least people are biased to believe it is.
The Seven steps to being a bias buster would definitely assist with positive prejudice biases as well.
When you are considering collaboration, the first impression should never be the last. Some of the most productive partnerships seem to start with some friction before being on route to being the most trusted relationships. Don’t agree? Think about your personal relationships, particularly your special someone.When considering collaboration, the first impression should never be the last. Some of the most productive partnerships seem to start with some friction. Beware of your biases. #MyContributionCounts #YouMeWeMovement Click To Tweet
Before you go, how many of the above list describes you? The more you are, the more people may see you as privileged and believe you are capable. Whether you are or not. Only time will tell.
Next week we will delve into what’s in a name, and how our biases can be a barrier to hiring the best candidate for the job.
Visit previous blogs in the unconscious bias series:
Until next time, make your contributions count.
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