Discrimination is bad for optimizing your business

Discrimination is bad for optimizing your business

In America, we are well aware of how wrong and harmful discimination is. We hear every day about how people suffer due to discrimination and how lives are ruined.  We hear all about the various legal battles in court that happen because a large company or university discriminates against someone on the basis of race. Minorities are not the only ones being discriminated against, as whites and Asian-Americans are discriminated against by affirmative action policies at universities and especially for government jobs such as post office, bus driving, and other jobs.  Although discrimination is prevalent, or perhaps rampant in the United States, at least we have been educated to know that it is wrong.  In other countries, it is common to discriminate without even a nanogram of remorse or discreetness.

If you run a small or large company, you need the best possible workers for all jobs.  If you have two applicants for a job, and one is a Kshetriya caste like you, and the other is a Brahman — you might be tempted to hire the person of your caste, even if he or she is slightly less talented at the job that you need him or her to do.  Lets say that you hire the person of your caste, and he only functions at 90% of the output that your other applicant could have.  You just lost 10% of your output, but your expenses remain the same.  If you are in a business where profit margins are thin, then you can not afford to lose even 1% of your gross productivity, or you might be in danger of going out of business.

Another more comical reason why you are benefitted by hiring people who are NOT from your community, is that you might have LESS in common.  If you have too much in common with people you work with, you will be tempted to spend all day chatting far too much, and your work will not be done with full efficiency.  Hire someone from a community that has as little in common with you as possible — to the point where there is nothing to talk about other than the weather — this way you will not chat at all, and productivity will be at an all time high. Anti-social people are great to work with.  They are no fun at all, and they will not join you for drinks after work, but you might get your best work done with them.

Another great hiring strategy is to hire people who don’t speak your language. Even if you have a lot in common, there will be no way to talk about it.  Communication will be very basic, and lots of work will get done.

On the flip side, if you hire great workers who are antagonistic to your clients because they don’t like the community your clients are from, then you will find that technical skills do not always make up for negative social interaction traits.

I had an experience with a company that did printing for me.  This company had workers of different races working there.  There were a handful hispanic guys there, two were very polite to me while two regularly gave me dirty looks and made rude remarks to me.  There was a black guy who was slightly friendly, but didn’t have too much to say. There was an Asian-American who was polite, but indifferent and not too friendly to me — not too friendly. I notice that the Caucasians at that company made an effort to be very friendly and warm towards me.  This example is sort of extreme, and unusual in my experience.  Did people treat me well or poorly because of the color of my skin? Or, were those people I encountered just individuals who are just being themselves?

So, if you want to get ahead in business, forget about hiring people who are the same race or caste as you, or “like you”, or who are “the right sort of person”, or “from a good community” whatever that means.  Hire people who get the job done best.  On the other hand, don’t hire super workers who treat your customers with contempt, or you might not have customers for long!

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