Recognising Unconscious Bias: 3 Tips to Change Your Perspective
Do you prefer white chocolate or milk chocolate? Have you ever thought about tasting something other than what you prefer? Or do you just stick to what you know and not consider your options?
It’s estimated that the average adult makes about 35,000 remotely conscious decisions each day. But have you ever thought and recognised what unconscious bias decisions you are making? Are you following what you know and not contemplating what may be a better option? As humans, we are making almost 1500 unconscious decisions per hour! That is amazing if you ask me!
Now think about your work environment. How many times have you sat in a meeting and held onto your thoughts, just so that your peers don’t judge you? Do you think there might be a better solution to your teams problems, but go along with the status quo? You are not alone…
Research indicates that individuals who have been impacted by bias, are 3x likely to be disengaged, 3x likely to withhold ideas and 3x likely to leave their job within the year.*
What if I showed you there is a way to sit, learn, understand, and recognise your biases? If your peers learnt this skill, would your work culture be more inclusive, with a diverse way of seeing things?
Here are three tips for your next team meeting, that will challenge your unconscious biases- and let you see things from a different perspective:
- Propose a question to your team about a current situation, rather than speaking about it from your own viewpoint. Ask for their insights, thoughts, and perspective. This should give your team the opportunity to brainstorm ideas with fresh thinking.
- When you hear a view you disagree with, take a moment to consider it rather than attacking or dismissing it entirely. Give yourself that moment to pause between stimulus and response.
- Write down each team members views in your own words, pause, then go back and read those notes. Does it sound more appealing the second time around?
Once you take the time to recognise what your unconscious biases are, and embrace a different way of thinking, the world truly becomes your oyster.
Recognising unconscious bias is an invaluable skill that will take you from strength to strength, no matter what stage in your career or life you are in.