Unconscious bias training at all levels of an organization can help employees become aware of their prejudices and predispositions, correct these beliefs, and strengthen an inclusive mindset, according to executives.
“Empathy is also key to advancing equity,” said Jim Falteisek, senior vice-president of corporate affairs for 3M Asia, a multinational conglomerate, in a press statement. “We encourage male employees to learn and understand the challenges for women in the workplace … From these, employees can then take action to build a culture of belonging and advocate for those who are marginalized.”
A 2020 Center for Creative Leadership (CCL) report on diversity, found that — while men and women agreed ambition is critical for leadership — women were “unsure of how ambitious to be or appear.”
SELF-DOUBTTaskUs, a business process outsourcing (BPO) company, has a mandate that at least 50% of its internal promotions go to women.
“We don’t force the 50%. We want to hire based on skillset,” said Regina A. Aguila, vice-president of people for TaskUs, in a March 10 event organized by the BPO. “It’s just recognizing that equal opportunities exist for all.”
Apart from dealing with external biases, women can also face self-doubt that could prevent them from pursuing professional goals. The CCL report found that women are more likely to have self-limiting thoughts and deal with perfectionism and imposter syndrome.
“You can break biases by starting the conversation,” said Ms. Aguila.
Victoria H. Alcachupas, a single mother and division vice president of integrated marketing for TaskUs, used to beat herself up for “trying to do everything” until she realized it wasn’t realistic.
“We expect women to work like they don’t have children,” she said, adding that the executive coaches provided by TaskUs helped her find her blind spots.
Having women leaders promotes employee well-being and decreases burnout within teams, said Vina D. Paglicawan, TaskUs director of wellness and resiliency. This, despite women being more burned out than their male counterparts.
“The barriers that women are facing today imply that employers need to start looking at employee support through a different lens and consider the things that also matter: wellness and mental health,” she said.
TaskUs employs over 100 mental wellness professionals to support its workforce.
Female to male leadership in the Asia Pacific remained slightly under 28% in 2021. Research suggests that 30% is considered the tipping point for minority groups to affect decision-making processes. — Patricia B. Mirasol