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Why You Should Be An Ally

Flags from around the world all lined up with a building in the distance.

The word “Ally” has been a buzzword since 2020. But what does it mean to be one? Being an Ally means understanding the double standards and biases individuals or groups face and supporting them.

When we think of allies, we immediately think about being an ally to women or marginalized communities. But what about men, white individuals and those with traditional values?

We often hear the response, “They’re the majority,” or “They don’t need our help.” But are those good enough reasons?

The climate has changed so much that supporting a woman means destroying a man, or being an ally to a lesbian co-worker means hating Catholics. None of this is true, yet we constantly see and hear it. What does it mean to be an ally?

Numerous studies report data showing that women possessing the stereotypical “female” traits, such as attention to detail and strong administrative skills, lead them to be viewed as strong managers but are not strong enough to be leaders

Women often face the issue of being painted as emotional or unstable if they show anger or “too much emotion.” Ironically, many working women also serve as the primary caretakers for children, elderly parents, or family members in addition to their full-time jobs. Emotion and empathy are considered to be essential components of being a caretaker. 

On the other hand, when women DO embody traditionally “masculine” traits, such as decisiveness, straightforwardness, or lack of emotion at work, they are considered “mean” or “cold.” This double standard is even worse for Black women, who have to face the historical stereotype of “Angry Black Women” for expressing anything other than passive niceness. 

Now, white straight men with the same “masculine” traits are labeled as insensitive, privileged and biased. 

Set being an ally aside for a moment. Where’s the inclusion? It’s becoming harder and harder to be yourself at work and in life! All the more reason why you should be an ally. 

Becoming an ally means examining how you perceive others for being themselves and standing in solidarity with them. That’s it. You don’t have to hold up signs, create petitions or protests, just use your voice. Say something when a man is accused of something negative for voicing his opinion. If you witness someone policing another person's tone, correct them.

Being an ally requires courage. It’s also good for camaraderie and teamwork. 

Are you struggling with your organization's ally efforts? No worries! Give us a call at 800.834.4946 or contact us here.


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