On the surface, the word marginalized means to be pushed out to the edges — the opposite of inclusion. Of course, none of us would put others on the periphery deliberately. That would be straight-up discrimination and bullying.
So, how does marginalization actually happen in our workplace?
Marginalization feels like…
- Being told or treated like you don’t look/act/fit the part
- Being given work that fits a reduced, stereotypical view of you, not who you really are and what you want to do in your career
- Feeling you don’t match with, “the way things are done here”
- Feeling like a fraud
- Unfairly missing out on sponsorship or informal endorsement
- The result here is that peers with innate characteristics similar to the in-group (being a white male, for example) get more access to opportunities
- Having your ideas passed over, ignored or credit being given to someone else
…or not being able to voice your ideas at all
🌡️ Poll time
🤔 Why are some groups marginalized?
Yes, inclusion is for all of us and diversity needs all of our perspectives in the mix to work. But some people get kicked back and passed over more than others.
Social structures of power have been set up over history, sometimes by happenstance, but more often by brute force. Now, despite our best intentions to be fair, these structures persist as complex social patterns.
📌 Start with this: figure out your ‘why’
You might not be expecting to read this here. Don’t jump aboard the D&I bandwagon because it seems like the right thing to do.
When treated as due diligence exercises, diversity & inclusion approaches don’t work.
A general passion for social justice is a weak impetus until you put it into a concrete and personal context. To make sense of what you’re really doing when you try one of the actions in this program, figure out your ‘why’.
- Think about the perspectives you lack for your team’s work to be truly brilliant.
- Think about the particular injustices in your community that you really want to have a hand in solving.
- Think about what incenses you about our world when it lacks true diversity and inclusion.
- Think about who in your workplace or personal life suffers from marginalization.
🗝️ Your key takeaway
Certain groups are marginalized and this blocks diversity and inclusion. Getting clued up on the issues and what you can do will improve your acquired diversity. But, first, figure out your personal ‘why’ for working towards true diversity and inclusion and its benefits.
Six tiny ways to build trust
Academic Brené Brown's research found that trust isn't earned through sweeping, grand gestures. Trust is built in very small...
Is choosing to be silent a form of privilege?
It's natural to feel uncomfortable talking about difficult subjects. But is choosing comfort and avoiding difficult conversations...
Help your whole team to be their whole selves
Most workplaces have some sort of in-group. And everyone is aware — consciously or subconsciously — of what defines who's...
What stops you from talking about diversity?
Talking about diversity still makes many of us uncomfortable. But starting these discussions is important.