Home » Building a foundation of respect - Part 7

Building a foundation of respect - Part 7

September 5, 2017

Myths and facts about women in the skilled trades The challenges:

  • Outreach and recruitment to traditionally underrepresented groups
  • Attracting and retaining the brightest and the best from all sources of labour

The solutions:

  • Eliminate non-job factors such as gender-specific traits and/or racial, age, dis/ability, appearance preferences or culturally specific behaviours from recruitment, job evaluation and advancement processes
  • Treat people as professionals, not as stereotypes that make assumptions about job ability/inability

Eliminating non-job factors from recruitment includes planning the interview process

  • Use an interview panel of at least two people rather than a single interviewer. This may capture information that a single interviewer may overlook.
  • Strive to include panel members from underrepresented groups. This can provide perspectives from a different viewpoint.
  • Train interviewers on unconscious bias and awareness of invisible barriers affecting women and other underrepresented groups.
  • Identify standardized interview questions based on the qualifications required to be successful in the skilled trades, not on traits associated with gender, race or culture.
  • A few key traits to look for, in addition to evidence of technical training and skills, are a candidate's time management skills, ability to overcome obstacles, and ability to work well in a team.

Did you know? Workers from traditionally underrepresented groups have been prevented from working in construction due to barriers such as stereotypes and unconscious bias; not due to ability or inability.

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OUR NEXT INSTALLMENT: Developing effective communication skills to create and sustain a respectful and inclusive workplace

Previous installment: How bias can influence personal and business decisions

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Resources:

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In honour of Labour Day we celebrate Canadian men and women in construction skilled trades

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What is the single most important personal quality of an excellent tradesperson?

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