Self-awareness: Your social identity

Jo Larbie, 7th May 2018

We all make assumptions about our own identity and that of others.  Unfortunately, when we work together, assumptions are often treated as reality.  These assumptions influence our beliefs about how others think and their motives.

Social identity comprises the parts of your identity that come from belonging to particular groups.  We use social identity to categorise people into groups, identify with certain groups and compare various groups – typically thinking more highly of our own.

Use the following questions to work through some of your assumptions.  You may wish to keep a particular person in mind (someone you’ve recently met or someone with whom you have problems) when answering.

Your awareness of social identity, both yours and that of others, is important in today’s workplace.  People are different, but each person can maintain his or her group identity while valuing the contributions from other groups.  What do you think you need to do next?

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