5 Recommendations for Managing Unconscious Bias

July 6, 2021

I had several discussions this week based on my post about -Top 10 Advices to Control Unconscious Bias for Successful Recruitment-.

'I was asked how we can learn about our biases and how we can reduce the undesirable effects. I collected here my answers for everybody-s benefit:

1. Recognize that you and everybody have unconscious capacity. Accept the fact that we have biases and take that with responsibility. Learn more about the subject - there are many online sources, ask experts, take a test and attend a good course.

2. Develop the capacity for self-reflection. After your actions pause, and think what you did, how and why you did it. Understand how much of your decisions was based on facts, conscious thinking or automatic reaction.

3. Unconscious behavior frequently manifests itself when we face uncertainty. Practice -constructive uncertainty- to tolerate ambiguity. In these situations step back and separate the assumptions from the facts. The best way to do this by asking questions.

4. Engage with people you consider -different- than you. Expose yourself in conversations with strangers. You can learn what first opinion was right and wrong about the person. With the discussion you get the chance to correct your idea. This is a habit to take on.

5. Ask for feedback. Understand that unconscious bias happens unintentionally. We all have different biases. Because of that we can recognize better others- inconsistencies than our own. Learn your biases from people who can challenge your thinking even if this would take you out of your comfort zone.

It is not easy to manage our biases. It takes effort to develop these good habits to overcome the adverse effect of unconscious bias. Everyone has their own path to take. Let me know if you have other ideas.

Posted by

Neil Kelly

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