Protective hesitation may be a relatively new term for many, but it is certainly not a new concept in the workplace.
What Is It and What Is Being Protected?
Protective hesitation is when leaders don’t provide clear, consistent feedback to women and ethnically diverse staff because they’re worried about the recipients’ response or how they themselves could be perceived. The problem is that the practice is not protective but rather prohibits professional career development for staffers who need guidance the most.
When looking at gender specifically, men are offered a clearer picture of what they are doing well