Diversity and Inclusion
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 occurs in the workplace when employees are treated as invisible as if their skills or talents are unnecessary.
Marginalization feels like…
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.
A 2018 story in Harvard Business Review pointed out how women of color are marginalized in the workplace and asked to do “office housework” more frequently in comparison to their white counterparts. That kind of work rarely raises an employee’s profile and leads to promotions or any career success.
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.
How to fix this at your workplace?
You might not be expecting to read this here: don’t jump aboard the D&I bandwagon because it seems like broadly 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, figure out your ‘why’.
. . .
The bottom line?
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.
How we unwittingly exclude and marginalize
Have anything else to add? We’re always keen to hear your feedback! Drop your comments, suggestions, or whatever else you’d like to talk about here.
Fiona Young (she/her) >
Having previously led Learning and Development for 3,000 people at Europe’s leading venture builder, Blenheim Chalcot, Fiona knows a thing or two about how to build high performance culture. As Content Director at Hive Learning, Fiona pioneered the organisation's leading guided content programmes which are designed to turn learning into action. Most recently, Fiona led the inception, development and delivery of Inclusion Works by Hive Learning - the world’s first diversity and inclusion programme focused on turning unconscious bias into conscious action - created from over 1,000 leading sources.
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