Unconscious bias is the new leading edge on the Diversity and Inclusion journey. Despite all of the strategic sessions and training dollars spent on this topic, not to mention the discrimination cases, there is still a glass ceiling and discrimination continues to exist. Human Facets latest assessment, Cognizant, explores unconscious bias at both an individual and group level. You can download the PDF files on the Human Facets home page for more information.
There is a price to be paid for ignoring the impact of unconscious bias as the companies listed below can attest.
“Unconscious bias is increasingly being used in employment litigation to prove discrimination. Unconscious bias has been a central issue in Dukes v. Wal-Mart Stores, Inc., the largest class action discrimination lawsuit in history in which two million women are suing Wal-Mart for gender discrimination. The Court’s receptivity to unconscious bias arguments in the Home Depot class action and the FedEx class action resulted in those cases settling for huge amounts, $87.5 million and $53.5 million respectively. Unconscious bias is being raised in class actions against several other Fortune 500 companies such as Best Buy, Johnson & Johnson, Cargill, Merrill Lynch, General Electric, American Express, MetLife, and Morgan Stanley.
There is considerable debate about whether and to what extent unconscious bias affects employment decisions. To date, employers appear to handling the issue by claiming that unconscious bias does not exist. Perhaps, employers should learn from Wal-Mart, Home Depot, FedEx, and Walgreens (i.e., companies who failed in their arguments that unconscious bias does not exist) and instead, audit their processes to ensure that unconscious bias is not at work in their companies.” Ballard.
Let Human Facets help you to unravel the complexities of unconscious bias and provide your leadership team and key players with the leverage of increased consciousness on this topic.