I'm watching the companies new "Discrimination and Harassment training", and I'm thinking, "it starts with some rather upbeat music for the topic". Not quite as bad as chika-chika-Bow-WOW.... but I'm thinking, "this is a somber topic, and the slide whistles and Jazzy theme doesn't seem to make it better".
I shared a Floor at Adobe with HR for a while, and one of the HR persons heard me talking in the lunch room about taking their training, and they asked me what I thought. I quipped, "A little disappointing, it was a bit of a downer, as by the title I thought it was going to be a how-to guide". They were unimpressed with my sense of humor. I was unimpressed with their lack of one.
The training started with the SVP's telling us what we great strides in these areas over the last few years. And I'm thinking, "what kind of offensive hellhole do they think we were before they came here?" Seriously, I was here before they were, and as far as I can tell, things haven't gotten any better, and in many ways have gotten worse. Of course, I don't have their metrics. But it doesn't feel like we're suddenly a great company and we sucked in the early 2000's... it feels like we used to be more comfortable with each other, and now we need to be suspicious of anyone new (especially of the opposite gender). Especially Men towards Women: if you trigger a snowflake, they can ruin your life. How is fear and self censorship really better?
While these trainings are good. Studies show they're pretty ineffective. But I believe they do motivate the attention seekers or activists to be looking out for opportunities to be a victim or offended. (E.g. it probably reduces liability in lawsuits, but I suspect increases the frequency of them or false claim settlements). So I'm not convinced they're a net win.
Articles that touch on Sexual Harassment. I'm pretty sure the crusade against sexuality is working in some cases. I'm also pretty sure that it has had many unintended consequences, and not all of them are for the better. more...