MILLENNIAL HR DESIGN
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FEATURED RESEARCH (Q4 2020)
When trying to determine whether an organization is diverse, people often look to “the numbers”—that is, statistics about the relative representation of different groups. Implicit in this interpretation is that a threshold exists in terms of relative group representation at which an organization crosses over from not being diverse to being diverse. This research seeks to determine where members of different social groups draw this threshold—a concept we refer to as “the diversity line.”
Dominant groups (Men, White) had lower thresholds for diversity than non-dominant participants (Women, Black, Latinx) when presented with organizations of different make-ups that were randomly assigned. The authors tested different mediators, such as to see if people adjusted their threshold in response to contextual information (to justify a lower threshold of the outgroup in the relevant contextual baseline). The story for dominant groups was straightforward – they set thresholds of diversity that worked to serve their hierarchy enhancing goals.
Numerical Thresholds of Diversity Vary by Group Status
Miguel M. Unzueta
Gateway contexts (home, school, workplace) can foster social class cultural differences. Mainstream institutions are structured to reflect and reinforce mostly middle-class ways of being a self. Through dual processes of differential socialization and the institutionalization of middle-class norms, gateway contexts can fuel and perpetuate inequality.
Conditions of different social class contexts give rise to culture-specific selves and corresponding patterns of behavior. Middle-class contexts tend to reflect and promote cultural norms of expressive independence. Working-class contexts tend to reflect and promote norms of hard interdependence. Each of these ways of being enables people to adapt to their local social class contexts.
Gateway Contexts Shape Selves and Fuel Inequality
Nicole M. Stephens
Hazel Rose Markus
L. Taylor Phillips
When ethnic minority and women leaders advocate for demographic balance within organizations, their perceived low-status demographics become instantly salient, thus activating negative stereotypes associated with their low-status category. Perceived incompetence is the core of most of the stereotypes that tend to be leveled against non-Whites and women.
But White men who engage in diversity valuing behavior aren’t penalized because they don’t face any negative stereotypes. High-status groups are afforded “idiosyncrasy credit,” and, therefore, given freedom to deviate from the status quo. White and male leaders benefit in terms of higher performance ratings for engaging in the exact same behavior because it increases interpersonal warmth, which accounts for 82% of variance in perceptions of everyday social behaviors.
Diminished Performance Ratings for Non-White and Female Leaders
David R. Hekman
Stefanie K. Johnson
MEET MILLENNIAL HR DESIGN
ABOUT STEVEN HUANG
I am blessed to have found a career in Diversity and Inclusion by blending my unique experiences as an HR analytics pioneer, an actuarial analyst, and an advocate for social justice.
My approach to fostering diverse and inclusive cultures has been shaped by recognizing that diversity is an opportunity to create stronger businesses and beautiful communities.
I pursue challenging projects that are meaningful to me. I intend to leave a legacy whereby my career has made a positive impact on the lives of those around me.