Over recent years there has been plenty of publicity surrounding discrimination in the workplace, the balance between men and women in the boardroom, equal rights and more recently protected characteristics.
As a female having worked a large proportion of my time in a male orientated environment, I have up until recently watched these debates from the sidelines. I have been proud of my ability to stand my own and support the cause through my successes.
Imagine how my awareness grew when I experienced first hand the challenge felt when you stand up for your rights as an individual in business.
I have recently been in a situation with a parent company that at times was unpleasant … ( no further detail needed). I became all too aware that actually when you need the reassurance that you will in fact be treated fairly and your rights protected it is far from as simple as that.
What do I mean? Well it is as simple as kilos and grams, as everyday as pounds and stone. It’s about weight, the weight an organisation has behind it in comparison to the individual.
If you find yourself in a position when you feel you have been unfairly treated, discriminated against the requirement is for that to be proved. To prove such a case requires a legal team, time, dedication, money and above all emotional energy. You already feel battered and bruised and treated unjustly and now you have to go to battle.
Imagine stepping into the ring with your opponent. In most boxing matches you are fairly matched right? Rarely would you see a feather weight eyeing up a heavy weight boxer as a fair opponent.
So when a business with a seemingly unlimited pot of cash steps into the ring with an individual with a good cause, who is likely to suffer the biggest blow?
The individual still has to live, wants to work and needs to move forward and has only limited funds to support each blow. Is this really a fair match, is it sustainable?
So without the benefit of either legal aid or pots of cash the battle doesn’t even start. The unspoken threat that the business will drag the battle out and throw lots of cash at it without feeling any of the emotional strain attached just feeds the pain the individual feels.
As an individual you are left to make a choice, fight the battle and potentially drag it out and put your life on hold in the process, or park it, let it go and move on with your life slightly wiser and bruised. One thing’s for sure you are morally standing on a higher ground than the bulk of the business bully.