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SHRM board member David Windley discusses how unconscious bias can derail workplace diversity efforts.
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Millennials first filled my world in November 2004, when I accepted the job of chief diversity officer at Abercrombie & Fitch—a position mandated by the settlement of discrimination lawsuits against the company totaling nearly $50 million. Millennials, by then, were not only the retailer’s workforce but also its market. As a member of Generation X, I was fascinated by the drastic differences in culture between my own peers and this younger group. I quickly came to admire their openness, their generosity, their friendships, their priorities and their effortless command of accelerating technologies. I heard my peers and older people disparage their supposed laziness, self-absorption and lack of work ethic, but these traits were not present in the young people I had come to know.
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