By Karolien Notebaert
About a year ago, Sam became a proud parent. Sam was on parental leave for 9 months and is now back to work. Whilst reading those two sentences, what gender did you associate with Sam? Due to the fact that more women take parental leave compared to men, most of us spontaneously thought of Sam as a woman.
Let’s try again. You are the leader of a team and in charge of dividing assignments. Who will receive the analytical assignment? Juliet or Peter? Who will receive the communication assignment? In this situation, too, many of us unconsciously assume that men have better analytical skills and women better communication skills. Is there something wrong with this? Not necessarily. Although many unconscious assumptions can be helpful, they can also easily lead to ineffective decisions and discrimination, making ourselves and others the victim of our unconscious biases. Read More