Employees expect to work in environments that honor their rights and protect them from unfair practices. However, discrimination unfortunately exists, and when you muster the courage to report it, not all reactions will be in your favor. Some employers, rather than addressing the root of the problem, may resort to subtle intimidation tactics to discourage you or to make you regret your actions.
Recognizing these tactics can be the first step in defending your rights.
Subtle changes in work assignments
If you notice that your tasks have changed or become noticeably harder since you reported discrimination, it might be a veiled attempt to make you feel overwhelmed or discouraged. This change can also take the form of reducing your responsibilities, making you feel undervalued or isolated from the team.
Exclusion from meetings or projects
Another tactic your employer may use is to leave you out of critical meetings or not give you assignments on important projects. This form of isolation not only affects your career progression but also serves as a way to make you feel as if you do not belong.
Unwarranted negative feedback
Receiving negative feedback or unjustified performance reviews out of the blue can be a tool to make you question your capabilities. When you feel your skills are under scrutiny, it can create self-doubt and make you reconsider whether reporting the discrimination was a good idea.
Unexplained work-schedule changes
If your employer suddenly changes your work schedule, especially without a clear reason or in ways that they know might inconvenience you, it can be a method to exert subtle pressure on you.
Rumors or gossip
Whispers or backhanded comments may start circulating about you after you make your report. This method aims to tarnish your reputation and isolate you from your colleagues.
The Equal Employment Opportunity Commission gets more retaliation claims than any other type. If you reported discrimination in California and begin noticing these subtle intimidation tactics, know that these actions are unjust. This can help you decide how to proceed.