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Deal with Workplace Discrimination

Deal with Workplace Discrimination

By Lauren Bayne Anderson

April 08, 2011

Interrupt and Redirect


Another coping mechanism is “interrupting and redirecting,” which can change the direction of the conversation abruptly without further discussion.

Examples may be:

  • >“Whoa, let’s not go down that path.”
  • > Someone says: “The baby boomers won’t have the level of tech savvy we need. We need to recruit young kids right out of school.” You say: “Well, let’s not assume that all the young people will have the skills we need and others won’t. Let’s test everyone’s skill and then make our decision based on the results.”
  • Someone says: “So did you hear the one about the three bald men?” You say: “Careful there, ladies, I resemble that remark.”


Interrupting and redirecting is simple – and it gives people a chance to change directions, the EEOC says. If the disrespectful behavior continues, you can use one of the other techniques, such as assuming good intent and explaining impact. Or you can walk away, removing yourself from the situation. But the important thing is to not stay silent, the note.

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