Stereotyping in the workplace can have a crippling effect on productivity and profits, particularly the person who is being targeted. Stereotyping can be compared to rust on a car that rarely goes away unless sweeping actions are taken.

In many instances stereotyping comes from the people we hang around with. This could be our own family members, friends, peers and even the neighbours. The other main offender is the media. Hollywood often depicts people of certain cultures and backgrounds in a particular manner that is usually demoralizing.

Le’ts face it, practically everyone is guilty of stereotyping. The Swedish have preconceived ideas about the Greeks. And the Filipinos have perceived perceptions about the First Nations, etc. .

People tend to label others because it makes them feel better, superior and safer. Plus it is much easier to do that than to take time out to get to know each other.

It is crucial for business owners, managers, human resources personnel and the rest of the staff to be aware when stereotypes are happening. More importantly take proper measures to make the workplace a safe and harmonious environment.