Monthly Archives: February, 2019

gender, gender diversity, lgbt, lgbtqq, lgbtq, inclusion in the workplace Canada, workplace inclusion, inclusive workplaces, Canada inclusion, research diversity, diverse workplace practices, Harvard business review

Research: When Gender Diversity Makes Firms More Productive

February 19th, 2019 Respect in the Workplace

SOURCE: Harvard Business Review

FEBRUARY 11, 2019

The business world has long debated the effect of gender diversity on business outcomes. Does diversity make a company more productive?

Many say yes. Some researchers argue that gender diversity leads to more innovative thinking and signals to investors that a company is competently run.

Others say no. Conflicting research indicates that gender diversity can sometimes harm firm performance.

But most research has looked at this question within a single country or industry. As a result, their findings are likely limited to that country or industry. This got us thinking: Could the conflicting research be due to differences in context? Region and industry might affect people’s opinions of gender diversity, and this might then affect whether or not diversity leads to stronger outcomes.

In research one of us (Professor Zhang) conducted, this is exactly what was found. In a study of 1,069 leading firms across 35 countries and 24 industries, we found that gender diversity relates to more productive companies, as measured by market value and revenue, only in contexts where gender diversity is viewed as “normatively” accepted. By normative acceptance, we mean a widespread cultural belief that gender diversity is important.

In other words, beliefs about gender diversity create a self-fulfilling cycle. Countries and industries that view gender diversity as important capture benefits from it. Those that don’t, don’t.

For example, we found that the percentage of women in telecommunication companies in Western Europe, historically a relatively gender-inclusive context, was significantly tied to a company’s market value. Specifically, a 10% increase in Blau’s gender diversity index (see more in our sidebar) related to a roughly 7% increase in market value. However, in the energy sector in the Middle East, which has historically not been gender-inclusive, firms’ gender diversity was unrelated to company performance. MORE

Harvard business review, Research-Based Advice for Women Working in Male-Dominated Fields, workplace, research, women, women in the workplace, workplace equality, female equality, research based evidence, safe work environments

Research-Based Advice for Women Working in Male-Dominated Fields

February 19th, 2019 Respect in the Workplace

SOURCE: Harvard Business Review

FEBRUARY 13, 2019

When it comes to gender equality in the workplace, organizations are keeping a slow — and I do mean slow— and steady pace.

In 2018, 26 years after the first “Year of the Woman” in 1992, a historic 102 women were elected to the House of Representatives. However, they still represent less than 25% of the total number of elected officials in the chamber. A record 248 women were appointed board directors among some of the most prominent companies in the U.S., but they make up just 31% of total new board directors selected last year. And while Donna Strickland became the first woman in 55 years — and the third woman overall — to win the Noble Prize in physics, women are still grossly underrepresented in many STEM fields and are more likely to face gender discrimination on the job.

In other words, progress does not mean parity. And, working in a climate where you’ve been historically excluded — like in research labs, corporate boardrooms, or even Congress — can lead women to question their abilities.

As president of Barnard College and a cognitive scientist by training, I’ve spent years observing what causes self-doubt, particularly for women in male-dominated fields. I’ve observed that there are numerous factors at play. Chief among them: gender bias that comes in both explicit and subtler forms.

The end result? Highly skilled women succumb to stereotype-driven expectations. It begins early when girls as young as six stop believing that girls are the smart ones, while boys continue to believe their gender is gifted. As women get older, these stereotypes discourage them from pursuing careers thought to be typically reserved for men. And, with fewer women in a field, subsequent generations  of women are deterred from pursuing them.

It’s a vicious cycle, but it can be broken. MORE

diversity in the workplace, workplace, diversity, inclusion, workplace inclusion, lgbtq, metro, women in the workplace, safety workplace

Survey: What Diversity and Inclusion Policies Do Employees Actually Want?

February 19th, 2019 Respect in the Workplace

SOURCE: Harvard Business Review

FEBRUARY 05, 2019

We know that diversity matters. In addition to being the right thing to strive for, having a diverse workforce helps companies acquire and retain the best talent, build employee engagement, increase innovation, and improve business performance. Yet corporate diversity still lags, especially at the top levels, which continue to be dominated by white, heterosexual men.

It’s not that effort isn’t being made. As a senior partner at the Boston Consulting Group and head of our firm’s diversity efforts, I know companies are investing in diversity programs. In fact, our research in 14 countries shows that 96-98% of large companies (above 1,000 employees) have such programs.

And yet, despite this investment, we’ve found that around three quarters of employees in underrepresented groups — women, racial and ethnic minorities, and LGBTQ employees — do not feel they’ve personally benefited from their companies’ diversity and inclusion programs.

So what should companies do to make real progress?

We surveyed over 16,000 employees in 14 countries around the world to see what obstacles they face, which diversity and inclusion interventions are used at their workplace, and which they find most effective for women, racial or ethnic minorities (this data is from the U.S., UK, and Brazil only), and LGBTQ employees.

We found that members of majority groups continue to underestimate the obstacles – particularly the pervasive, day-to-day bias – that diverse employees face. Half of all diverse employees stated that they see bias as part of their day-to-day work experience. Half said that they don’t believe their companies have the right mechanisms in place to ensure that major decisions (such as who receives promotions and stretch assignments) are free from bias. By contrast, white heterosexual males, who tend to dominate the leadership ranks, were 13 percentage points more likely to say that the day-to-day experience and major decisions are free of bias.

It’s no surprise then that when employees ranked the efficacy of diversity interventions, there was consensus about getting back to basics and rooting out bias.  The top-ranked interventions included robust, well-crafted, and consistently followed antidiscrimination policies; effective training to mitigate biases and increase cultural competency; and removing bias from evaluation and promotion decisions. These should be priorities for any organization that wants to improve diversity.

MORE

Sheldon Kennedy, mp Kristy duncan, ottawa, sport, abuse, sport abuse, coach, coach abuse, sport coach abuse,

Making sports safer for kids is a never-ending fight

February 19th, 2019 Respect in Sport, Sheldon Kennedy
The Star

 

On Wednesday of this week in Sarnia, gymnastics coach Dave Brubaker was acquitted of sexual assault and sexual exploitation. The former national women’s team coach had been accused by a former athlete, who was deemed credible by the court, but the judge cited police errors in the course of the investigation. Brubaker walked.

Also this week, the CBC released the results of a data-driven investigation that showed that over the past 20 years, at least 222 coaches in Canadian amateur sport had been convicted of sexual offences with more than 600 victims who were under 18 at the time of the offence. Some people who knew better professed to be shocked.

 

“This isn’t a shock,” says Sheldon Kennedy, the founder of the Calgary & Area Child Advocacy Centre. “The centre does 150 new investigations every month, and that’s just in Calgary. And they’re talking about 20 years.”

But the CBC spurred conversation, even if the conversation was already underway. Friday afternoon, Sports Minister Kirsty Duncan was in Red Deer, with her provincial and territorial counterparts, announcing The Red Deer Declaration, which they said committed to gender equity in sport by 2024, zero tolerance to abuse, and some other principles.

“Athletes must be at the centre of everything we do,” Duncan said. “They are not commodities. They are people, and they need to be respected.”

Principles are only a start, though; check the London Declaration of 2001. This is another try. Nothing like this moves quickly. But sometimes, it moves.

It is disturbingly easy to look at the sports system in Canada and especially the United States in a vacuum and conclude something is wrong. In 2018, doctor Larry Nassar was convicted of sexually abusing hundreds of girls in U.S. gymnastics, and the cover-up appears to have extended to both USA Gymnastics and Michigan State University. In Canada, Brubaker skated, but national ski coach Bernard Charest was convicted last year of 37 sex-related charges.

There are many more examples. In December of 2018, Wrestling Canada took the unusual step of making an internal report on its culture — replete with harassment, sexism, sexual relationships between coaches and athletes and officials, among other problems — public. The federation expressed contrition, while detailing steps toward safer sport.

Like the #MeToo movement, it all has the feeling of long-hidden truths surfacing, and in concert with society, the urgency over the conversation has ratcheted up significantly in the past two or three years. There is as much urgency now as there has ever been. Skiers who were abused by Charest are suing Alpine Canada in Quebec for $1.35 million, including $450,000 in non-insured punitive damages.

“Don’t you think we can learn from what happened in the United States?” says Lorraine Lafrenière, CEO of the Coaching Association of Canada. “Didn’t USA Gymnastics have to declare bankruptcy?”

 

“There was no more room, and it was time for the explosion,” said one Canadian sports executive. “It’s cumulative.”

But it’s gotten better, too. Kennedy and his partner Wayne McNeil have been at the forefront of safety and training in sport for over 20 years, since Kennedy came forward after being sexually abused by his junior hockey coach, Graham James. They have seen everything evolve.

“We were laughed out of rooms,” says McNeil. “And people said it was a hockey problem or it’s not as big a deal. Today they say, we need this (coach and parent training) program as a recruitment and retention tool. And if you don’t have it, then that’s a problem.”

Kennedy talks about how it used to be all about catching the bad guy, and over the years he has come to realize prevention — strengthening the bystander, creating common and shared language on abuse, creating a culture that abhors criminal acts, but also bullying or discrimination or harassment, fostering a belief that safety trumps everything else — is critical.

“I think the gaps, from what we can see, (are in the) reporting structure and the follow-up structure,” Kennedy says. “Campaigns around telling people talk, talk, talk, and when people reach out for help that’s hard to find. That’s the gap. This has got to be an independent funded entity, that’s going to make sure that it handles these issues properly for all sports and youth-serving organizations across the country. It’s got to be robust.”

Duncan says they are working on a third-party reporting entity. It would cost money. Quebec tried something similar, and the system was overwhelmed. According to the CBC, the number of coaches charged and convicted virtually doubled from 1998-2008 to the following decade.

Which, most likely, is good news. Kennedy will tell you: The problem has been there all along. More cases almost certainly means more people are actually speaking aloud.


So what next? Duncan, a former gymnast and longtime dance coach, has been sports minister for a little over a year. Her government faces an election in the fall, and has had itself a tumultuous week.

“When I came into this role about a year ago, my number one priority was addressing abuse, discrimination, harassment in sport,” Duncan said in an interview this week. “It is a system problem, it is a culture problem.”

But she seems committed. Lafrenière says she has never seen as much interest on safe sport from any sports minister. Ahmed El-Awadi, the head of Swimming Canada and a co-chair of Duncan’s safe sport working group, thinks there is a chance for significant change. There are signs actual initiatives could be unveiled next week.

“Here’s what people need to understand: Predators will never be completely eradicated,” says Lafrenière. “So what they do is they find an industry — the Catholic Church, say — and take advantage of its weakness. Then they went to Scouts. They found a weakness and they used that. And that’s what happened in sport, because we’re such a volunteer-driven country in sport, which is beautiful but it’s also the problem. So yes, sport has a problem. But this is a bigger problem.

“Things like (#MeToo) have pushed it forward. I think that’s good. I think that’s a change we need to see in the sports system, and in every system. It’s allowed us to say out loud as a system: No, it’s not performance over safety.”

Beyond the independent third-party reporting system, goals could include a harmonized code of conduct, and a harmonized code of sanctions. There are already pilot programs to give poorer sports access to the investigative resources the bigger federations can afford, and that seems likely to become policy. In a country where the RCMP can’t legally publish the names of child sex offenders, El-Awadi thinks Swimming Canada has a solution. Coaches have to recertify every September, and starting this year will have to sign a waiver that specifies any disciplinary procedure will be noted, and will be published online.

“Hopefully, reading these articles (athletes) say, it’s OK,” says El-Awadi. “It’s OK to say something. It’s OK to tell. You don’t have to call us. You can tell your aunt, your friend, you can go right to the police. We hope that the more we do these interviews, the more they get inspired to say: I have a story. I need to tell somebody.”


Words, actions, policies, money: all of them are needed, some more than others. A chance to get better, is what this is. It isn’t pass-fail; it’s fail less, every year.

“We can create this, and this lightning-rod week will actually make people do it faster,” says Lafrenière. “If we have the same conversation two years from now and we have not done our job, then the system is at risk of being dissolved.”

Nobody believes complete safety will ever be achieved. But what’s the point of sports if it doesn’t protect our children as well as it can? Better can happen; it already has. It just can’t ever stop.

 

sport pei, government pei, safe sport, abuse in sport, training, coach training, respect group, abuse prevention

P.E.I. government, Sport P.E.I. working to protect youth in sport against abuse

February 13th, 2019 Respect in Sport

SOURCE: Nancy Russell · CBC News · 

The P.E.I. government and Sport P.E.I. say they’re taking measures to protect youth in sport, responding to a series by CBC News and Sports on abuse in amateur sport in Canada.

In a written statement to CBC News, the minister responsible for sport, Robert Mitchell, says P.E.I. requires that all provincial sports organizations have an abuse and harassment policy.

Those policies must be confirmed yearly as part of annual funding agreements between the sport division and provincial sports organizations.

Mitchell said the sport organization may choose to develop its own policy or use the policy of its national organization……

Coach training

Sport PEI offers training for coaches around safe sport, including a module on making ethical decisions and another on respect in sport. It will also host a summit on safe sport at the end of March. MORE

Sheldon Kennedy Statement

February 11th, 2019 Respect in Sport, Sheldon Kennedy

 

Sheldon Kennedy and Respect Group fully support the necessary systematic changes required to improve sport to ensure the safety of our youth. We believe that the vast majority of coaches, working with our youth, are there for the right reasons. It has been our goal to educate them on all forms of maltreatment so they have the confidence to carry out their “duty of care”. We will continue that charge.

 

 

About Respect Group Inc.

Respect Group (respectgroupinc.com) was incorporated on April 5th, 2004 by co-founders, Sheldon Kennedy and Wayne McNeil, to pursue their common passion: the prevention of bullying, abuse, harassment and discrimination (BAHD). As Canada’s leading on-line provider of prevention education related to BAHD, Respect Group has certified over 1.2 Million Canadians involved in sport, schools and the workplace. Respect Group is a Certified B Corporation (bcorporation.net).

 

For more information about Respect Group: www.respectinsport.com

 

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CPC / COC Joint Statement

cpc, coc, Canadian olympic committee abuse statement, sport, Canada, abuse,

February 10, 2019

Statement Regarding Safe Sport: Tricia Smith, President Canadian Olympic Committee, Marc-André Fabien, President Canadian Paralympic Committee

The Canadian Olympic and Paralympic Committees stand for sport free of harassment, abuse or discrimination of any kind. We are committed to the health and safety of all who play or work for the Canadian Olympic and Paralympic teams and to doing our part to ensure safe sport is the standard.

We will both be in Red Deer, Alberta, next weekend, for the 2019 Canada Winter Games. We look forward to meeting with the Minister of Sport and our partners in the sport system to advance this important conversation and to take action to better safeguard those in sport today and into the future.

Part of our talks will focus on better harmonized mechanisms and actions to address harassment, abuse, and discrimination in the areas of awareness, prevention, reporting, management, and monitoring. The goal is to ensure a common understanding among stakeholders and supporting the safest possible environment for all participants from the club level all the way to Team Canada.

The COC and CPC will be strong and influential voices committed to driving meaningful improvements on this critical issue.

 

 

respect, workplace, sexual harassment, weinstein, harvey, metoo, #metoo, #metoo movement, workplace safety, workplace training, prevention

Why Open Secrets Exist in Organizations

February 6th, 2019 Respect in the Workplace

Source: Harvard Business Review

JANUARY 14, 2019

In 2017, the New York Times broke the now widely-known scandal of media mogul Harvey Weinstein’s apparent decades-long pattern of sexual abuse and harassment. The story came as a shock to the public. However, as details emerged it became clear that Weinstein’s transgressions were not unknown to Hollywood insiders. They were, in fact, an “open secret.”

This raises the question: Why do issues remain open secrets in organizations where multiple employees know about a problem or a concern, but no one publicly brings it up? We explore this in a set of studies recently published in the Academy of Management Journal.

We found that as issues become more common knowledge among frontline employees, the willingness of any individual employee to bring those issues to the attention of the top-management decreased. Instead of speaking up, what we observed among our participants was something like the bystander effect, psychological phenomena describing how people stay on the sidelines as passive bystanders, waiting for others to act rather than do something themselves.

The bystander effect can be understood with an example: Imagine Jane, a member of an engineering team at a company. The top management of the company is eager to release a product to the market before competitors mimic it. However, a bug in the product has been uncovered, and someone needs to bring up the issue. When Jane is the only member of the team who is aware of the issue, she would feel a personal responsibility to alert her managers of the problem. But, when her team members—John, Jack, and Julia—also know about the bug, Jane might feel that approaching leadership isn’t solely her responsibility. She becomes less likely to speak up, and for the very same reason, John, Jack, and Julia are also less likely to do so.

Indeed, our research shows that when multiple individuals know about an issue, each of them experiences a diffusion of responsibility or the sense that they need not personally take on any costs or burden associated with speaking up. They feel that others are equally knowledgeable and, hence, capable of raising the issue with top management. They find it convenient to psychologically pass on the accountability of speaking up to others, and this makes them less likely to speak up themselves.

Considered from this perspective, it starts to make more sense why problems—such as harassment and abusive supervision—can remain unaddressed for so long without anyone taking action. Voicing such issues is, after all, risky, as individuals can often be punished or put down for speaking up. Thus, when Jane, John, Jack and Julia all know about the same concern, each tends to wait for one of the others to take on the risks of speaking up and feels less personally guilt or duty-bound to bring up the issue him or herself. The bystander effect kicks in, and diffusion of responsibility prevents issues from percolating up to managers. MORE

respect, equality, workplace, best workplaces

America’s Best Employers For Diversity 2019

February 6th, 2019 Respect in the Workplace

Source: FORBES 

Careers

 

While it may often seem that no employer is getting diversity and inclusion right, many organizations have struggled to cultivate cultures that welcome and support all workers. Headlines have abounded, with incidents ranging from the unconscious bias incidentat Starbucks in Philadelphia in April that resulted in the arrests of two African-American men for asking to use the bathroom to the age discrimination lawsuit filed at IBM after the company dismissed more than 20,000 older workers in five years to the countless sexual harassment allegations that have shaken workplaces across the nation. Yet at the same time, some companies have been making progress.

Forbes partnered with market research company Statista to create our second annual ranking of America’s best employers for diversity. The list was compiled by surveying 50,000 Americans working for businesses with at least 1,000 employees, and it features some businesses whose appearance on the list, in light of recent events, may come as a surprise. Starbucks and IBM, for example, both appear, their claims to the No. 44 and No. 217 spots a reflection of the thoughts of their respective workforces. MORE

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