INT 061: Identifying and Overcoming Bias in the Workplace and Life

Biases are everywhere, whether between people to even ones within yourself. While you can’t completely avoid bias in life, you can equip yourself with the tools and knowledge to deal with them. In today’s episode of IntHERrupt, Linda is joined by transformation coach and strategist Dilcia Morales to discuss how we can identify and overcome biases in the workplace and life.

Transformation can be complex, especially for individuals.

  • Dilcia was confident and comfortable in the corporate work environment as a working mom. 
  • However, she also wanted to volunteer and participate in the local PTA, which many working moms can’t make time to do. As a result, many PTA members were stay-at-home moms.
  • She participated in meetings and realized the stay-at-home moms’ view of working moms (and vice versa) was interesting.
  • Their “the grass is always greener” attitude showed they didn’t fully understand the effort and work that went into both groups. This is a poignant example of bias.

We talk a lot about bias in society, but everyone has biases.

  • Dilcia was asked to lead the fundraising efforts for a nonprofit. However, she experienced an internal bias: that she didn’t have time and couldn’t do it.
  •  But she faced her fears and ignorance, and by the end of her second term, she obtained a new playground for the school and increased participation among volunteers. 
  • This made her realize that she probably can do a lot more than she thinks.

A bias is a preconceived notion. Things you think you know.

  • Dilcia had that about her ability to participate in her nonprofit. But she pushed past those feelings to take it on.
  • From a leadership perspective, we have a bias that time and duration in a previous role is necessary before starting a new job.
  • We also have a serious societal bias from a corporate perspective, and acknowledging those biases is critical for Dilcia in her work. 
  • When she encounters these situations, she learns the team and individual dynamics to make them receptive to change, which helps her find success.

Combating biases you encounter:

  • Specifically for hiring bias, panel interviews featuring a wide array of different interviewers is a great solution.
  • Whenever Dilcia makes a big decision, she consults multiple people, even just two or three, to help make that decision.
  • She avoids stagnation. Bias is born from ignorance, so continuing your learning to expose yourself to new beliefs and information helps combat internal bias.

Dilcia’s experience with interruption:

  • Dilcia’s field features a lot of collaboration. But when everyone went virtual, that became a challenge.
  • Her biggest interruption was managing her virtual team and providing the proper support despite not collaborating in person. 
  • She solved this by being open and transparent. She asked questions and found a balance. 

Dilcia’s main takeaway? Whenever you make a decision, separate the facts from the emotions. Are you making the decision based solely on facts? If not, ask if you’re being open-minded and if it’s justifiable to have that emotional input.

Connect with Dilcia on LinkedIn for more great thoughts and content. Do you have stories to tell? Connect with Linda to share them. This podcast is produced by TSE Studios. Check out other podcasts by TSE Studios, including this episode’s sponsor, The Sales Evangelist, helping new and struggling sellers close more deals and achieve their sales goals. Subscribe to the IntHERrupt Podcast so you won’t miss a single show. Find us on Apple Podcast, Google Podcast, Spotify, and Stitcher. Audio created by Ryan Rasmussen Productions

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