It’s all too easy to harbor unfounded expectations of someone based on a single characteristic — for example, Parisa is the most vocal in meetings, so you assume she’s a natural leader, or Guarav has to leave at 5:00 every day to pick up his kids, so you assume he lacks ambition. Ultimately, your views can influence a person’s performance.
Avoid relying on these assumptions when you set expectations and goals because they can set up your direct reports to fail. Look at the whole person, not just a single characteristic when setting expectations. Maybe Parisa is more vocal in meetings because she needs more support from the team. Maybe Guarav doesn't lack ambition, but simply prioritizes his children over promotion.
When you take the whole person into account, you will use better judgment as you go about your daily leadership activities.
Unconscious biases are hard to identify, much less know their true impact. Before you can take steps to operate more fairly and effectively at work, you need to get your bearings. Download our latest guide: Seven Misconceptions About Unconscious Bias.