Microaggressions & Unconscious Biases
In our daily (working) lives, we try to make sense of situations and act according to how we perceive and interpret a given situation.
Since it is impossible to grasp all available information, we simplify the world by drawing on our past experiences, also to protect our information processing capacities. More often than we think, this leads to so-called cognitive biases, which often occur unconsciously. These are, for example, automatic stereotypes and other faulty tendencies in memory, perception and evaluation. They unintentionally influence our decisions, attitudes, feelings and behaviors. Some of these cognitive biases lead to microaggressions, which are brief and everyday verbal, behavioral, and environmental indignities that bring negative or even hostile comments to a target person or an entire group (e.g., people like you ....). This can have serious consequences, as microaggressions can lead to anxiety or depression. To prevent the negative effects of unconscious prejudice, we need to become aware of our prejudices on the one hand and develop coping strategies for microaggressions on the other.
The learning goals:
- Understanding the mechanisms underlying cognitive biases
- Learn about strategies for raising awareness about cognitive biases
- Learn coping mechanisms to respond to micro aggressions
- Learn more about the positive effects of micro affirmations
Marion Festing is Professor of Human Resource Management and Intercultural Leadership at ESCP’s Berlin campus and holds the Renault Chair of Intercultural Management. She has contributed to ESCP's development in recent years in many leading positions such as the Rector/Dean of the Berlin campus or the Associate Dean for Research. Marion has founded ESCP's Talent Management Institute and the Excellence Centre for Intercultural Management, Diversity and Inclusion which both link academic and practitioner communities by creating new knowledge and building platforms for networking and exchange. These topics also reflect Marion's research interest. She teaches courses on (international) human resource management, (female) leadership and intercultural management on graduate, post-graduate and Executive levels in various programmes and has developed award winning digital course elements such as the serious game Moving Tomorrow. She also consults practitioners, is a certified MBTI trainer and serves as a keynote speaker at conferences and seminars.