Performance reviews can be intimidating, but they’re meant to assess how to maximize your employee as an employee. According to a new study though, Black women aren’t getting the most out of the review process due to potential internal bias.
Textio, a linguistics software company released findings from a report that stated for every piece of non-actionable feedback white men under 40 received, Black women received 8.8 pieces of feedback. Other minorities like Latina women and Black men, were likely to receive “low-quality” feedback as opposed to actionable feedback which included pointed examples and advice.
“It’s validating of the experiences that Black women report having in the workplace,” said Textio CEO and co-founder Kieran Snyder said to Forbes. “To me, as a business leader, that means when people escalate this kind of concern about bias in the workplace, you believe them and you take the individual case seriously.”
What’s more, she said she believes the survey results points to the unconscious biases that show up in the performance review process.
The findings also pointed out that women are more likely to be deemed as opinionated and combative, while men are labeled ambitious and confident. Additionally, 8% of Black people and 14% of Latino people were described as ambitious compared to 39% of white people and 57% of Asian people. 12% Black people were said to be easy to work with, compared to 41% of white people.
This, is partially because of a lack of inclusive work environments, thus certain racial groups being painted with broad strokes when they are in mostly white spaces.
“The upfront part is about representation and diversity,” Snyder said to Forbes. “Well, guess what? If you succeed at that and then you don’t have equitable systems in place, you’re probably even worse off than you were before … . You’re not providing opportunities for them to learn, grow, succeed, thrive in your organization.”