Is Workplace Discrimination Really Discrimination – Part 2

In this discussion of whether the idea of ‘appropriate discrimination’ is acceptable in the workplace, I wanted to introduce two concepts that would form the basis of my argument. I first presented the idea that every company or business is selling something. I then discussed the defining component of a sale, which I quantified as being dependent on trust. Part 2 of this arc will introduce the second idea which I alluded to in Part 1.

Let’s begin.

2. Who is the Most Trustworthy?


In Part 1 we learnt that intimacy was required in order to develop trust. By this rationale, the person that is most intimate is the most trustworthy.

So then, maybe the question really is not ‘who is the most trustworthy,’ but instead is, ‘who do we want to be the most intimate with?’

I would say that the person ‘we want to be the most intimate with’, is the person that is going to make us look the best in front of other people.

So if we have a superficial look at society (yes, that’s all society is), we can by and large agree that the ‘ones who have,’ look better than the ‘ones who have not.’ As such, it’s not surprising that we therefore desire to be more intimate with the ‘ones who have.’


When we look at this upper echelon of society (the haves), we also see that it is very male dominated. Now, if we equate that to a company, this means that management (upper echelons) in companies will invariable be male. So when we think about who males generally want to look better in front of, I would say it is other guys. This ‘Wanting to be the King’ mentality means that men only want to be intimate with someone that will make them look better in the eyes of other men. 

Keeping with the company analogy, the decision makers of a company (who are predominately male) will only want to be intimate with people (e.g. coworkers), who in the decision makers’ eyes, have the skills to help further the decision makers’ careers. 


To summarise, by this rationale, the person that makes you look the best, is the person you want to be the most intimate with and therefore this is the most trustworthy person. So who is person? This person is a male who is the most desirable of all; i.e. the one who has the best combination of brains, looks, height, charisma and power – ‘The Ultimate Man.’


Society has obviously come a long way since these days where the aforementioned conclusion was accepted as fact. However, this old fashioned thinking still exists in the workplace; especially in the upper echelons of society and businesses. This doesn’t mean you can’t succeed if you don’t fit the required stereotype. There are plenty of cases where it has happened. It does however, mean that you might have to act smarter than the average competitor.

This concludes Part 2. I will use the ideas presented in Part 1 and Part 2 to make my case for whether ‘appropriate discrimination’ should be allowed in the workplace. Stay tuned for Part 3 – The Conclusion.



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