“She’s Too Abrasive/Aggressive/Emotional” – Interrupting Bias in Performance Evaluations

Studies show that subtle gender and racial biases often creep into performance evaluations. Learn how to design and fill out performance evaluations to avoid this.

Research shows that women’s reviews are more likely to contain negative feedback, and women tend to receive different types of criticism than men. Men typically receive constructive suggestions related to additional skills to develop and growth areas, whereas women are critiqued for personality: “You come off as abrasive;” “Pay attention to your tone.” Women are often described as “bossy,” “abrasive,” “strident,” and “aggressive” when they lead, or “emotional” and “irrational” when they disagree with others. The implicit message: women should conform to prescriptive stereotypes – they should be modest, self-effacing team players. One study found that, among men and women who received critical feedback, only 2% of men received negative personality criticism, but 76% of women did.

This and other forms of bias often play out unchecked in performance evaluations. This webinar will provide:

  • Tips for managers re how to interrupt bias in the performance evaluation process and correct patterns of systemic bias in reviews.
  • Information on how to design and carry out performance evaluations processes to interrupt bias at the organizational level.
  • Training for anyone who fills out performance evaluations for others on how to eliminate the influence of biases when evaluating others.

This webinar will examine how various forms of bias impact the performance review process, including gender and race bias, along with other factors.

Presenter: Professor Joan C. Williams

Suggested Audience:

  • Anyone who fills out performance evaluations for others – employees at all levels, from junior employees completing 360 degree evaluations to senior managers, and anyone in between who evaluates others;
  • Anyone who designs or oversees performance evaluations, influences how reviews are conducted, or is involved in the performance review process;
  • HR and D&I professionals; and
  • Change leaders.

Men are encouraged to participate! This webinar is equally applicable to men and women.

Discussion questions can be found here.
Handouts: