Overview

tokenism


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Is the practice of placing or promoting individuals from disadvantaged groups (e.g. women, ethnic minorities, disabled people) into high-profile roles in the organization in order to give the impression that the organization practises equal opportunity. It represents a cynical move by managers to disguise or ignore the structures and procedures that disadvantage women, ethnic minorities, and disabled people. In this way, whilst the token individuals may benefit personally, their role does nothing to help further the cause of the disadvantaged group to which they belong. In fact, it might have a negative impact because the token individuals become examples for organizational decision-makers to illustrate the meritocratic nature of the organization and to neutralize arguments for change.

Subjects: Human Resource Management.


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