The billionaire Director of Uber has resigned after making a ‘sexist’ remark during a meeting designed to discuss the company’s culture, including the need for a more diverse work force and to address sexism in the work place.
The irony failed to amuse staff members, who sent a flurry of emails to management in response, which resulted in Uber Director David Bonderman’s resignation.
During the meeting, Arianna Huffington (founder of the Huffington Post) spoke about the importance of adding more women to its board, stating, “There’s a lot of data that shows when there’s one woman on the board, it’s much more likely that there will be a second woman on the board”.
David Bonderman responded, “Actually, what it shows is that it’s much more likely to be more talking”.
Whilst many would consider that worse statements could have been made, making politically incorrect statements could be a headache for employers, especially in large and varied work forces.
As a defence, employers should take care to show that they have taken reasonable steps to prevent offensive (or potentially offensive) incidents taking place during the working day or at work related events. For example, employers could offer training through webinars, ensure that its bullying and harassment policies are up to date, and ensure steps are taken to address any complaints fairly and efficiently.
If you would like to speak to Jasmin Dhillon, surrounding any of the matters highlighted in the article, or for any other issues related to employment, please contact her on firstname.lastname@example.org or 01494 478671.
“Ms Fowler wrote that she was propositioned by her manager. She wrote that she reported him to human resources, but was told that he would get a lecture and no further punishment because he was a “high performer”.”