Joshua J. Risch
Organizational Behavior, BA 730 Online
November 4, 2011
Dr. Normand Hays
HY Dairies, Inc.
Rochelle Beauport is one of a few women of color in marketing management at Hy Dairies that had a promising career with the company. Syd Gilman, the vice president of marketing at Hy Dairies, Inc., offered Rochelle to go from assistant brand manager to marketing research coordinator. She was offered the position because of her successful effort of improving the sales of Hy Dairies’ gourmet ice cream. Syd Gilman also rewarded her with the new opportunity in order to give her a new experience in different working classes and enhance her career at Hy Dairies, Inc. Rochelle Beauport on the other hand, enjoyed her duties as an assistant brand manager because of the challenge that it brought her and because it directly affected the company’s profitability. According to Rochelle, her position as a marketing research coordinator was a technical support position – a “backroom” job – far removed from the company’s bottom-line activities. The marketing research coordinator position was thought to be the opposite route to top management in the organization. Rochelle thought that because of her noticeable differences, she was placed far from her dreams and was no longer important to the company. Feeling reluctant, Rochelle accepted the offer anyway. Syd Gilman did not realize that he actually gave Rochelle a wrong perception about the whole situation. Rochelle is now faced with a difficult decision of confronting Syd to change what she thinks is a sexist and possibly racist practice, or simply quite.
Apply your knowledge of stereotyping and social identity theory to explain what went wrong here.
Stereotyping is the derivative of the social identity theory. Stereotyping can be defined as the process of assigning traits to individuals based on their participation in a social theory (McShane, 2010, p. 72). When stereotypes are broken down, we find two different types. Descriptive stereotypes are perceivers’ beliefs about the characteristics of a social group and indicate the attributes, roles, and behaviors that describe that group (Gill, 2004). Prescriptive stereotypes depict the specific behavioral norms that individuals must uphold to avoid derogation or punishment by others (Gill, 2004). Collectively, stereotyping lays the groundwork for prejudice and discrimination.
Social identity theory states that the in-group will discriminate against the out-group to enhance their self-image. It also explains how we perceive people through categorization, homogenization, and differentiation. In the social identity theory the group membership is not something foreign or artificial which is attached onto the person; it is a real, true and vital part of the person. It is crucial to remember in-groups are groups you identify with, and out-groups are ones that we don't identify with, and may discriminate against.
It was obvious in the case of Rochelle Beauport that she enjoyed being an assistant brand manager. The position seemed to be more challenging and had a greater impact on the company’s profitability than the new position, market research coordinator. The market research coordinator was more classified as a “backroom” job. Rochelle had the opinion that market research was not the route to top management in most organizations. She also built up a perception that because of her color, she was placed aside or had been put on the sideline for another time.
What went wrong is that Syd Gilman misperceived that Rochelle Beauport would enjoy the new position that he had gone through before his position today. He thought that by offering the new position to her, it would help her broaden her experience and enhance her career at Hy Dairies, Inc. Mr. Gilman believed that his experiences could also be Rochelle’s experiences in the future. Syd was not aware of the...