Stereotype Threat at Work (Interrupting the Stereotype Threat Process…
Stereotype Threat at Work
the fear of being judged according to a
negative stereotype :star:
EX: a woman taking a math test is familiar with the common stereotype that “girls aren’t good at math.”
more examples on Table 1
stereotype threat places an
additional burden on members of stereotyped groups
Conditions for Stereotype Threats :!:
Stereotype threat will only occur for those tasks associated with the stereotype.
Stereotype relevance :!:
stereotype threat only occurs when the stereotype seems relevant to performing the task
Two additional conditions needed for stereotype threat to emerge
In work settings, difficult, complex, and
challenging tasks are where stereotype threat is
most likely to occur.
tasks that are new and unfamiliar
to the person performing them may be more at risk
for stereotype threat than routine, familiar ones
Personal task investment
How important doing well on the task is to the individual’s self-esteem and identity.
Those invested in the task are more negatively
affected by stereotype threat than those without
such personal task investment
Interrupting the Stereotype Threat Process Strategies for Reducing Stereotype Threat :!:
Provide Successful Task Strategy
one way to reduce stereotype threat is to teach affected employees behavioral strategies for improving performance and counteracting negative stereotypes.
Reduce the Stereotype Relevance of the Task
EX: By presenting
a test as one with no gender differences, the
stereotype would be irrelevant to interpreting performance on the test.
Change the Context
Remove people from the "token" situation
Provide an Alternative Explanation for Task Difficulty
Telling an individual a task in difficult by means outside of stereotype can reduce stereotype threat
Implications for Diversity Management :!:
Acknowledge stereotypes and address them
Shift the focus from the manager to the environment