You might think that it doesn’t happen at your office, because it doesn’t happen to you or when you are around. Right? But that is not the case. Unless you are a Person of Color it is hard to truly grasp the concept. More so making it the key reason to discuss racism at work with your co-workers.
Why Discuss Racism At Work?
Racism itself is a very hard topic, but ignoring it won’t make it go away. Like all social issues it deserves to be discussed. As problems happen in our world, talking to your colleagues allows them to learn more about you as a human and not just a coworker. Even in the event of discussions having less than a positive outcome it removes tension allows us to know more about those we share a space with.
How To Discuss Racism At Work?
Ask With Compassion
This is not a chore. So there is no reason to be apprehensive. Recognize that by doing so, you can theoretically cause your Black peers to feel that their experiences can be lumped into a routine. So always start the conversation by asking your co-works how they are doing and if they would like to have a discussion.
When And Where
In group discussions and even private interactions, once you’ve understood what’s going on, don’t immediately leap into a debate. Never attempt to place this topic for debate in an attempt to devalue the experiences of others. These attempts can quickly turn sour and cause your employees to shutdown.
Acknowledge And Empathize
Utilize your active listening skills and recount the events step by step with your co-worker. It is important because failure to understand what is unfolding portrays a message that it doesn’t matter or you aren’t equip to handle such an event. Thus it is imperative that there are training systems in place that facilitate such talks.
The perception of ethnicity has historically been inadequate and skewed. This warped vision underpins an alienated mass society and makes constructive social change very difficult. Impactful discourse on race can be useful on multiple levels. It can clarify the underlying complexities of social , economic and political inequalities. While it can enable us to undermine racial hegemony and deconstruct racialized “symbolic behaviors” that energize and reinforce this hegemony. Discussions will help us build a solid, sustainable democracy that invests both in its resources and in its people.