According to Bob Wilson, depending on the situations they are used,stereotypes can be damaging or helpful to an individual ororganization. Stereotypes are the social assumptions constructedabout a faction of people and are usually utilized on individuals,regardless of their personal traits since they are affiliated with acertain group. For example, when people categorize groups such as theItalians are expressive, Americans are innovative, and the Chineseare diligent, they are applying stereotypes. In most cases,stereotypes are neutral, negative, or positive. Although bothnegative and constructive stereotypes can be damaging, at times theyserve as a learning experience to professionals, employers, andordinary people.
Positive stereotypes include cultural thoughts that portray a givengroup in a constructive way. For example stereotypes such as womenare nurturing and Asian are good at math are presumed positively.While positive stereotypes can help people accomplish tasks that suittheir group, they are damaging because they make one feel less as anindividual, since they are only seen as a group. Therefore, positivestereotypes limit the abilities of management to exploit the skillsof individuals and assist them to acquire and develop newcapabilities (Paludi 925). For example, if an employer like BobWilson sees an Asian person as one who is good with figures asopposed to people, the worker may never be provided with the chanceto develop people skills. Thus, this will make the worker unhappy andunmotivated and might eventually leave the company because of limitedgrowth opportunities (Paludi, Carmen and Eros 56). Additionally,while viewing women as nurturing, sensitive, and modest might bepositive, such expectations can be hindering to female managers sinceadministrators are traditionally believed to be male leaders that arewilling to take risks, result-oriented, and strong.
Most stereotypes applied to people are derogatory because they arefounded on the negative perception of an individual’s sexualorientation, race, age, politics, and gender. For instance,stereotypes against women, homosexuals, and other ethnic groups canresult in discrimination and unequal outcomes across institutionalcontexts including employment. Negative stereotypes hinderproductivity in firms, leading to dissatisfied clients and decreasedcompany revenues (Paludi, Carmen and Eros 57). Mostly the attitudeadopted by many co-workers is that of ‘us versus them’ as groupmembers seek to safeguard information utilizing it as a form ofpower.
Usually people categorize things and other groups because it assiststhem to mentally organize and understand their world surroundings.The classification also helps distinguish different society groups.At times, employers and leaders use stereotypes to support decisionsabout managers, colleagues, and customers with limited informationabout the true character of such individuals. Hence, stereotypedpersons are rarely seen for who they are as individuals and what theycan contribute to the organization or business.
Responses to Student Posts
The student accomplishes a wonderful post in defining and explainingwhat stereotype is and how it affects the society. The studentprovides a detailed elaboration on how stereotypes can harmfullyaffect the selection of suitable candidates in the workplace becausethey often tend to disregard personal traits. I found the explanationof this student enlightening as the learner managed to conciselyportray the ways in which detrimental assumptions can contribute tounfair treatment. Moreover, I also found the suggestion that thestereotype matter is not an instant fix inspiring. The studentrecognizes that since stereotypes are formed over a lifetime, theyare not easy to change, but with self-reflection they can beeliminated gradually. I agree with the student that for people toassociate meaningfully, they should avoid stereotypical thinking.
I concur with the scholar that stereotypes are formed in the societyfrom personal experiences, shared experiences, and varying cultures.I also find the student’s definition of stereotypes simple, directand detailed. Besides, the explanations as to why people stereotypewere highly insightful. The student elaborates that people usuallystereotype to fill in the information that they lack about a groupbecause they do not have a personal or relatable connection.Furthermore, by using a case example to explicate the issue, thestudent depicts understanding of stereotypes and the manner they canaffect the society.
Paludi, Michele A. Managing Diversity in Today`s Workplace:Strategies for Employees and Employers. Santa Barbara, Calif:ABC-CLIO, 2012. Print.
Paludi, Michele A, Carmen A. Paludi, and Eros DeSouza. PraegerHandbook on Understanding and Preventing Workplace Discrimination.Santa Barbara, Calif: Praeger, 2011. Print.