End Affirmative Action!

Discussion in 'HTML' started by ronco@dodgeit.com, Mar 15, 2005.

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    In much of the racial dialogue in the U.S., integrationists dispute the
    simple fact of anti-White bias in the system. Of course, the media
    generally propagate our national myths -- myths intended to hide the
    ball from the majority. But there is one major daily newspaper that is
    overwhelmingly subscriber supported (and not supported by ad revenue).
    So it is no surprise that this well known paper reports the facts. All
    the facts.

    The excerpt below gives us another list of American corporations
    employing preference schemes. In this case, the schemes involve the
    curious practice of encouraging exclusive minority "networks" in which
    minorities are encouraged to "strategize" about promotions. Not the
    company's success, but promotions.

    You see, some organizations have several parallel corporate objectives.
    Some employees and managers are expected to get the goods out the door
    to customers. Other employees and managers -- now officially -- have
    the job of getting themselves promoted.

    In these corporate cultures, non-preferred employees charged with
    getting the goods out the door are expected to ignore the blatant
    promotion seeking activity of the preferred employees -- pretend it
    doesn't exist -- and press on with the company's economic business.
    Managers running this system have developed a wonderful set of code
    words, described below, to mollify non-preferred employees who might
    perceive unfairness in all this.

    It tells you a great deal about the organization.

    In any event, we get a nice list of short-sale candidates from this

    Good luck to Xerox in its drive to show the monolithic Japanese copier
    companies that "diverse" management ranks are better.


    The New Work Force: A New Push to Break the "Glass Ceiling"

    But Senior Jobs For Minorities Remain Scarce

    By Leon E. Wynter and Jolie Solomon
    Staff Reporters of The Wall Street Journal
    11/15/89 WALL STREET JOURNAL (J)
    {Part of a Series}

    For years, blacks, other minorities and women have complained about the
    "glass ceiling" -- invisible but real -- that acts as a subtle barrier
    to promotions into high-level executive jobs.

    * * *

    Today, though, a new sense of urgen p to be building over promoting
    minorities into senior management. And pressure for increased efforts
    is coming not just from minority employees, but also from growing
    numbers of decision-makers in big U.S. corporations.

    Demographics are an important reason. According to the Hudson
    Institute, a think tank, white non-Hispanic men made up 45% of the
    labor force in 1986, but from now till 2000, they will represent only
    9% of work-force growth. So, many executives argue, the successful
    companies of the future will be those that remake their corporate
    cultures so that women, blacks, immigrants -- and white males -- can
    get along comfortably and productively.

    Thus, attention is focusing on those few companies that have shown a
    knack for promoting minorities into fast-track management jobs. One
    such company is Xerox Corp., where minorities held 16% of managerial
    jobs and 18% of professional posts in 1987. Both figures, which have
    since risen, were close to the 21% overall minority participation in
    the work force in 1987, and significantly better than average:
    Companies reporting that year to the Equal Employment Opportunity
    Commission had minorities in only 9% of managerial and 12% of
    professional jobs.

    What's more, two of Xerox's five regional vice presidents and general
    managers are black. The vice president who heads the 16,000-person
    field-service army is black. And he reports to a black man, A. Barry
    Rand, who heads Xerox's U.S. marketing group, the company's single
    largest U.S. operation.

    Some of Xerox's tactics were considered radical just a few years ago.
    Among them: encouraging minority caucus groups and national "networks"
    providing support and advice to black -- and, later, female, Asian and
    Hispanic -- employees. "Xerox gave them the freedom to help advance
    themselves," says Glegg Watson, a black Xerox executive and co-author
    of a book on blacks in corporate America.

    Today, many other companies are trying to learn from Xerox. Johnson &
    Johnson and Polaroid Corp. have contacted Xerox recently to find out
    about its policies.

    Amoco Corp., seeking the best way to establish some form of minority
    employee groups, looked to Xerox for guidance. "Their reputation is
    that they do a good job," says Wayne Anderson, vice president for human

    Xerox officials say they didn't set out to promote minorities with the
    changing labor market in mind, yet they see definite advantages in
    being out front in promoting minorities. "We believe we will have an
    edge on people who are trying to catch up to the work force of the
    '90s," says Mr. Rand, the Xerox marketing chief. "The manager of the
    future is one who can relate to all parts of the population, with the
    ability to manage minorities, females, etc. and be managed by them."

    * * *

    Xerox's push started in the 1970s, when managers of the company's
    affirmative action program examined the careers of 10 top executives to
    find "the key job without which they would not have made it to where
    they were," says Theodore Payne, the company's affirmative action
    manager. Xerox found that the common "pivotal" job was that of
    first-level sales manager. But an internal survey showed that all of
    the company's 500 first-level sales managers were white. The
    affirmative-action managers had their work cut out.

    "We would go to a regional vice president and ask, `How many {blacks}
    can you get to be a sales manager?'" Mr. Payne recalls. The carrot was
    that Xerox based 20% of a manager's performance review on success with
    human-resources management, including affirmative action. The stick was
    unequivocal messages from two consecutive chairmen, C. Peter McColough
    and David T. Kearns, that this program was going to succeed -- or else.

    The program met with some resistance from white managers. "There were
    some . . . who just could not adjust," Mr. Payne recalls. "Some left,
    others just got crunched up." No one got fired, he says "but some had
    to be put out of harm's way. If the manager had trouble with blacks,"
    he says, they usually had other problems dealing with people.

    In changing its culture, Xerox never tried to dismantle its informal
    white, male old-boy network. Instead, the company allowed a black
    network to flourish. Groups sprang up in every major regional
    headquarters city.

    At first, Xerox did nothing to sanction the groups. But when the first
    confrontations with management arose, Xerox's Mr. Kearns, then head of
    U.S. marketing, supported the caucus-group concept. Says Mr. Rand, now
    in the top marketing post: "We knew we had to establish our own support
    network, our own communications channels, because we were not part of
    the old-boy network. We called it `revolution by telephone.'"

    The caucus groups met on their own time to develop advancement
    strategies. Mr. Rand says his group met after work in one another's
    homes and videotaped their sales presentations for group critiques. "If
    a sales rep wasn't performing well, another black sales rep might go
    into that person's territory and find them prospects," Mr. Rand says of
    the early days. One change the caucus sought and won was getting Xerox
    to post stepping-stone job openings, a system many large companies
    still resist.

    But Howard Holley, a black district manager in San Diego, worries that
    the groups' effectiveness may be waning because newer employees,
    finding a system in place, are complacent. "The people coming into the
    organization now don't feel as threatened," Mr. Holley says.

    As the groups succeeded, some whites in the company grew concerned.
    "There were numbers of white male employees who were worried when they
    saw how aggressively we were moving," says Richard Healy, who ran
    Xerox's Eastern U.S. region for most of this decade. "If I chose to
    place a ready black candidate or female, sometimes the white employees
    would come up and say, `What about me?'" recalls Mr. Healy, who is

    Mr. Healy, now a top marketing strategist for Xerox, says a company
    policy of candor about its affirmative-action goals was a major
    deterrent to backlash from suspicious white males. "It was a matter of
    convincing people that they too would have their chance. It was a
    matter of speaking about it very openly."

    To be sure, Xerox's success hasn't been universal or complete. Mr.
    Watson, who studied hundreds of black executives for his book on blacks
    in corporations, says minorities haven't had as much success breaking
    barriers in Xerox's financial-services business or in the important
    international arena. "When blacks become as successful {in those
    areas}, then Xerox as a whole will be by far the ultimate corporate
    model," Mr. Watson says.

    Even within sales, "I still think we have too high a rate of turnover
    of minorities," Mr. Holley says. He adds that Xerox can only sustain
    its goals by staying vigilant in training new workers.

    Mr. Rand believes Xerox will be one of the first companies prepared to
    test the value of American cultural diversity against Japanese
    homogeneity in the global marketplace. If Xerox, whose dominance in
    copying machines has been targeted by Japanese rivals, can prevail,
    "we'd like to be able to stand up and say that we've done that as a
    multicultural company," Mr. Rand says. "I think that will serve as a
    beacon for the rest of American industry."
    , Mar 15, 2005
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