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From intolerant jokes, to disparaging comments, to exclusion from meetings—workplace bias takes different forms, according to a study released March 21.
Judith Honesty, CEO of Honesty Consulting in Chicago, and David Maxfield, vice president of research at VitalSmarts, a leadership training company in Salt Lake City, conducted the study of 500 people who said they had been discriminated against in the workplace. Maxfield also is the co-author of Influencer: The New Science of Leading Change (McGraw-Hill Education, 2013) and the New York Times bestseller Crucial Accountability: Tools for Resolving Violated Expectations, Broken Commitments, and Bad Behavior (McGraw-Hill Education, 2013).Each person they spoke with had experienced incidents at work that made him or her feel unwelcome, excluded, discounted or disadvantaged because of his or her race, age, gender, national origin, religion, physical or mental disability, medical condition, pregnancy, marital status or sexual orientation, according to Honesty and Maxfield. Based on the stories they heard, they identified several ways in which people discriminate against others. Whether the discrimination was subtle or overt, those who experienced it heard these messages:
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