Women, and Men, and the ‘Occupational Minority’

I have just read an enlightening article on Stuff. The premise is vague enough that interpretation can be used as a means of argument, to the extent of which the article itself does not actually determine anything.

Here is the link. I would appreciate if you read it before this medium piece, for the sake of neutrality. http://www.stuff.co.nz/business/92265524/women-minorities-offered-big-jobs-when-businesses-in-crisis

The premise is simple: Women and minorities are more likely to be hired in times of trouble over their European male counterparts. Without making any definitive claims as to why, the graduate whose ‘research’ is behind the article has postulated this is the result of racism and sexism.

So, already we are faced with the possibility that women and minorities are hired for specific reasons outside of their ability to do the job. The subtle implication behind this is that European men are the natural employees, with an emphasis on top positions such as management and CEO. This is an enactment of Affirmative Action, yet in reverse.

Considering women and minorities to be expendable, Kam Sharma (the graduate) has put forth the idea that companies are more likely to hire W&M when the company in question is suffering a bad financial year. This is the end to his argument on ‘why’ they are hired.

From this we must assume one of two things;

European men are more expensive to hire, OR; (nope)
Women and minorities are beneficial to hire during periods of ‘weak performance’.

Based on salaries and wages, neither groups of people can be determined by value of their pay; the Equal Pay Act of 1972 eliminates this possibility.

This means the ‘occupational minorities’ (as Sharma eloquently puts it) benefit the company via their own assets. As in, skills and experience.

Unless, of course, the occupational minorities are beneficial for reasons outside of their own influence. One could easily postulate that increased minority employees raises the company profile, and thereby increases government grants they are eligible for.

In fact, if these occupational minorities are discarded and ‘blamed’ for fiscal misfortune, then it is logical to conclude they served a brief use. “Wham, bam, thank you, ma’am.” Obviously they aren’t cheaper. In fact, increased hiring works against the company in the pay department.

This is where we’re hit with a ‘woke moment’, if you will.

“Traditional leaders may not want to take the position because they think it will be a lot of hard work.”

Traditional leaders being the EuroMale.

Following on from this, the notion that managerial and CEO occupations are not hard work is preposterous, but it also hints at an underlying motivation to the research.

By enforcing the possibility that the European male has his job by way of a racial structure, or rather ‘white society and patriarchy’, the reader who has no in depth knowledge on the dissonance of identity politics becomes more likely to believe Sharma’s research proves an oppressive work culture.

Luckily, Sharma has listed the motivation behind this for us.

Companies in trouble might turn to women because they were seen as having better interpersonal skills and emotional sensitivity, he said. They could be seen as more valuable when companies were making difficult decisions around personnel.
Men from ethnic minorities were seen as warm and relatable, he said, which was a better quality to lead through periods of crisis.

Sharma clearly states women could be seen as more valuable when it comes to determining the rosters.

If this is true, then women are not hired during periods of low turn-over due to their expendable nature, nor for their cheaper labour.

It concludes, however vaguely, that women are valuable employees by their individual merit. It also produces the idea that men of ethnic minorities are given positions based on their perception, just as women are.

Yet this conclusion clearly presents that neither women nor minorities as a whole are regarded negatively by stereotype.

In fact, Sharma uses poignant examples which define his ideas precisely;

The use of Vicki Salmon’s and Ralph Norris, a woman and a Māori man, are his depictions of the ‘token’ hire. Again, his reasoning for this is that at the time of their hiring, their respective companies were experiencing trouble.

However, he neglects to profile either of them. There is little background available on Salmon, especially when compared to Norris, so the information lies in the company specified by Sharma.

Restaurant Brands. A huge franchisee group the Massey grad deliberately neglected to speak of at any depth.

Using the implication that RB hired Salmon to cut their loses and use her to bridge the hardship, Sharma glosses over the turmoil the company was experiencing outside of their own control.

2004 was a bad economic year, with many franchises shutting down. The cost of living sky rocketed, especially for the ‘prime customer’ RB targets. Tell me who buys from KFC and Starbucks the most. Factor in unemployment and conservative spending, and you have a painful reduction in profit.

It is natural a company will fire under-performing staff. Sharma believes Salmon was hired to be a plaster. This is entirely counter-productive to the business aspect of, well, business, unless Sharma truly believes that women like Salmon are happy to accept high pay and sit back (as a front), whilst tax-evading deals and decisions are made in a back room.

Concluding Salmon was hired due to malevolent business plans works against Sharma, because it exposes his belief that she was not hired for personal merit.

This is a predetermined expectation, which he has either subconsciously admitted, or is deliberately pressing into this research with the intent of misconstruing the ‘research’. We’ll get to that soon.

Now, Norris is famous within NZ and Aus business circles. He is high profile, successful, and filthy rich. His résumé includes international banking, chairman positions, and a variety of trading and shares details. Norris is a role model for young Māori kids (or should be).

Sharma reduced him to his skin colour.

The poignant examples are an accidental embodiment of his subconscious. His premise points the finger at others, presumably the hiring team, whilst actuality indicates his own unwitting bigotry.

What we see once we have ripped apart this inadequate idea is;

There is a political message hidden here. As with most mainstream publications, the buzzword ‘research’ has the same connotation as ‘science’. It is infallible, and to suggest it a false promise is heresy.

At not one point in the very short article is there any link to the research.

There is nothing to suggest these claims are true. For all we know, Kam Sharma is a pukeko with twelve eyes.

I did find his LinkedIn, though.

However, as with those who routinely nod and retweet these tabloid-esque articles, there is an absence of individual effort or critique.

I must question the motive behind the idea.

The disgusting laziness present in the public intellect. It clearly is a wide spread case of seasonal allergies, with the season being critical thought, and intellectualism unfashionable.

Does Sharma have a political agenda? A grudge? Is this a marketing ploy, or a slow cooking plot? Are the unions involved?

Is this simply pseudo-intellectualism?

It is so dangerous to presume the authors of these articles are propagandists themselves. Indeed, I am not attacking Susan Edmunds for reporting this story.

But I will relentless question the validity of all claims, and most unerringly I will scrutinise those who do not produce any concrete evidence. In this case, there isn’t even pretend evidence. There is nothing.

It isn’t true.