Stereotyping is not inherently bad, but it is undoubtedly restricting. Most especially in the industry of finance and professional service where such limitations can be detrimental to one’s career. In this article, the author highlights the importance of shifting from a perspective of general categorisation to embracing – as well as protecting – diversity in the industry.
Some sectors have a popular stereotype attached to them. We identify tech start-ups with bright young millennial things. We almost certainly all have the same image in our minds when someone mentions a banker. And when it comes to finance and professional services – we probably think of people in blue suits.
Stereotypes are hard to shift. They are not necessarily negative – but often they don’t reflect the full picture, seizing instead only an aspect of the reality. For example, there are lots of millennials in start-ups, but there are also lots of people with decades of career experience. Similarly, there are a lot of people in blue suits in finance and professional services – but that isn’t the whole story.