We often observe in academic institutions and even in social settings that people like to become parts of groups with whom they share some characteristics or background and many such groups are formed by members with similar ethnic backgrounds. This same phenomenon may also exist at workplaces and recruiters who come from Caucasian background may have higher preference or more positive perceptions of white candidates as compared to those from minority groups. Similarly, Caucasian managers may also let their stereotypes influence them in giving more career opportunities to white subordinates at the expense of those from minority groups.
Organizational cultures reflect the work norms usually followed by internal stakeholders such as management and employees. A workplace with majority white management team members and employees may also have an organizational culture that primarily favors the elements of Caucasian culture. Such an organization culture may leave little or no choice for employees from minority groups to adapt to the values of majority group or else risk getting left behind.
Being from a minority group may also mean one has little room to make mistakes as compared to those from majority group because any performance below the expectations may simple reinforce the existing stereotypes regarding minority groups even if such a shortfall might have been due to circumstances beyond one’s control. Thus, one will have a burden to put in greater efforts than those from the majority group to gain acknowledgement at the workplace.
Number matters at workplaces and majority groups exert greater influence on organizational culture and usually also have preferable access to advancement opportunities. Thus, being from a minority group may mean one would have to worker harder than most counterparts to gain acknowledgement as well as battle any negative stereotypes.