Emotional Tax: How Black Women and Men Pay More at Work and How Leaders Can Take Action (Report)Oct 11, 2016
Watch Dnika discuss this report with ESSENCE Magazine’s Features Editor, Sandra Bookman.
Emotional Tax May Impair Black Women’s and Men’s Health and Success
Black women and men have high aspirations to be successful at work, and outworking and outperforming others is the norm for many. But what happens to the minds, bodies, and spirits of Black employees when unrealistic expectations are too much to bear—if, despite their hard work, they remain set apart and undervalued?
In this study of Black women and men employees, we found evidence of an “Emotional Tax” that is levied on Black women and men as they try to successfully navigate through their careers. Emotional Tax is the heightened experience of being different from peers at work because of your gender and/or race/ethnicity and the associated detrimental effects on health, well-being, and the ability to thrive at work.
This report shows that Emotional Tax can deplete Black employees’ sense of well-being by making them feel that they have to be “on guard,” disrupting sleep patterns, reducing their sense of “psychological safety,” and diminishing their ability to contribute at work.
Findings from this study were shared by Catalyst exclusively with ESSENCE Magazine, which featured it in “Battling the Burden of Success,” an article in the November 2016 issue.
Research Partners: Abercrombie & Fitch; AT&T Inc.; Bank of America; Bloomberg; BMO Financial Group; The Boston Consulting Group; Chevron Corporation; Credit Suisse; Debevoise & Plimpton LLP; Dell Inc.; Deutsche Bank AG; EY; Halliburton; Hewlett-Packard Company; IBM Corporation; KeyBank; Kimberly-Clark Corporation; McDonald’s Corporation; Novo Nordisk; PAREXEL; Sodexo; State Street Corporation; UPS; Verizon
How to cite this product: Dnika, J. Travis, Jennifer Thorpe-Moscon, and Courtney McCluney, Emotional Tax: How Black Women and Men Pay More at Work and How Leaders Can Take Action (Catalyst, 2016).