Women of color disproportionately shoulder the burden of "office housework". In an article in Harvard Business Review, and with research from Hastings Law, women of color wind up with worse assignments than their white male counterparts, hindering their ability to be promoted.
What is office housework? ✏️ Taking meeting notes, 🧼 cleaning up the conference room, ☕️ getting everyone coffee and other tasks that need to be done, but will not help the person who does them get promoted, noticed, earn extra revenue, or acolades.
The double whammy is that if women of color refuse to take on the office housework, they often labeled as "difficult", "aggressive" or "uncollaborative".
So what can be done about this? Here are several tips to say no, without being penalized:
1. Install Equal Time 👊 💥 Use it to automate meeting note-taking, so everyone on the call can participate in the conversation, and no one has to focus on the admin stuff. (www.equaltime.io)
2. Pair your "no" with a "yes". ❌ ✅ If you decline to order lunch for everyone, offer instead to do a financial forecast, or something that will help your team succeed.
3. Ensure your manager is backing you up.💪 Check with your manager about your responsibilities. Explain to them your situation and ask them for reinforcement if you feel frequently stuck with office housework.
4. Use humor. 😂 Make a joke to highlight the absurdity of the situation, if you can find an angle here.
5. Rotate tasks. ♻️ Keep track of who does the chore, and then next week when the task comes up again, ask someone else to do it. Make this public, so everyone knows what's happening.
If you want to read the full article, here it is.