Published Apr 27 2022


By Ravinder Singh

Bias is not a good thing to prevail anywhere, but unfortunately it exits everywhere to a large extent and workplace are no exception. The understandings still stand a great chance if prevails, keeping in mind that if we peek inside every task with an angle of positivity and mitigate our personal thinking to a level of subconscious level and cross question our own perception and try to give it a positive touch rather than sticking to the darker shade of it.

A peek inside our brain that how does it work?

Although brain is a complex organ and difficult to understand but it controls our memory, emotions, passion, hunger for the learning and other brain functions that control our body. The cerebrum part of the brain regulates our ability to speech, ability to make judgement, ability to think and carve out reasoning, ability of problem solving, and the ability to learn and transform your emotions into a shape that resides in the memory. The brain perceives the signal what we see around us and interpret it in the form of chemical and electrical signal, for example, if somebody at your workplace does not resonate with your thought and keep on derailing you from your daily tasks then this might effect your thinking as brain perceives the signals as you see, and in this case it takes it as a negative thought therefore effecting your working, as there is a great possibility that the brain perceives this as a form of bias.

What really is the unconscious bias?

There is a great chance that we are influenced by our experience, background, and the environmental conditions and it directs and pinpoints us to our de facto choices, and we do it without even realizing it. This is quite normal to a large extent but we sometimes adhere to it and starts unconscious discrimination to those people who are not resonating with our thoughts, or they have different opinion as compared to us, or they are from different religion, ethnicity or even their color or communication style. The reason is just the perception we make out of it unknowingly and put it on our day to day thinking style and workplace may also get hampers from this illogical reasoning.

Types of unconscious bias

Gender Bias

Generally this arises when you only specific gender is given preference over the others.

Affinity Bias 

A bias that is unconscious and related with the preference that one gives to someone at the workplace who is close and shares same viewpoint.

Beauty Bias

This is a bias related with the beauty and generally there is a believe that if there is someone at your office is beautiful or taller then perception cannot be made merely on these facts.

Talent Bias

If someone at your office is multi talented then you should not attract bias towards that employee only because you cannot do the tasks that one executes. Always respect the special talent and try to adapt your perception accordingly

Confirmation Bias 

Few people are exercising this bias and they secretively or selectively collect information to justify their already formed biased opinion.

Horns Effect

Sometimes your badly perceived opinion or fact clouds your judgement and prevents you from taking into consideration the positive side of that person.

Halo Effect

This effect is somewhat opposite to the Horns Effect and in this case the positive trait of some person is seen and our judgement is submerge with this positive trait and we forgot to keep check on the negative traits of that person

Workplace may get affected by the unconscious bias

The workplace is the place where you work for your dreams to come true and nurture the positivity from it. At this place you organize your work properly and shape up your skills and if somehow you fall victim to unconscious bias then the same people who you cared for earlier can now be seen from your newly acquired perception and that may hamper your productivity and derail you from your niche. With your productivity plunging down you can be very disorganized and may completely shatter. Therefore it is very important for you to come out of the shackles of unconscious bias at the workplace and be a free bird who cares for productivity and team work. There are lot of things which can be done with our biases.

What more we can do with our biases?

It is very simple yet authentic that the bias can make or break us, therefore if we can train our mind that what best should be done to keep our degree of bias in check then this may be very helpful to carve out the best selves of ours. Positivity and negativity both propels our mind, it is up to us that which direction is good and which is bad. Start eradicating the barricades of your mind, and clear the clutter of negativity even if it is in a minuscule of form, the studies done at some research centres provide the figures that the diversity in the workforce at your office is more beneficial and the other finding that the board of directors with versatile members from different ethnicity are 43 % more likely to generate profits than other companies.

Unfortunately biases will always be with us

Yes there is no doubt about it that biases will continue to prevail among ourselves, even if the societal paradigm shift make us believe that unconscious bias is the obnoxious evil weed that we need to pluck out of our mind and give ourselves hope and positivity in every situation that arises while we are at work. Widen your work circle and even if you bias then take responsibility for the same. As generally there is a saying that do not mix office with your home, you may take this habit along with you at your residence too as the tranquility starts prevailing where you keep your self unbiased to a very large extent. For instance, if someone is a programmer then generally the reporting bosses expect good programming skills from the same, while on the other hand there might be someone working at your work place who have multiple skills and executes them at one’s ease then nobody at the workplace should keep the negativity at the pearl of one’s benevolent mind. The brain of everyone at the workplace should perceive this multi skilled employee as only a exception that sometimes emerges during the hiring process, and they should in fact take this fact positively and try to submerge within the feeling that they are lucky to have that person at their workplace. They should also take into consideration that there might be countless struggles and hardships that this multi skilled person might be facing even if there is no sign of struggle on one’s face. Therefore before jumping to any decision or conclusion try to take all facts into consideration and perceive only — the positive part of it to start with.