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It’s no secret that bias – whether intentional or unconscious – and even outright discrimination can rise in periods of prolonged stress. From the COVID-19 pandemic to the redoubled movements for social justice that reached new heights in the wake of the murder of George Floyd, it is clear that the last two years have served as a tipping point for prolonged stress, anxiety, and uncertainty.

In stressful situations, we tend to make decisions quickly. Stress can also lead to more destructive mental short-cuts, particularly in the workplace. The way we work has shifted drastically in the past two years, with many workplaces choosing to stay virtual even as some companies begin returning to the office. While this initial transition brought stress to employees and managers alike, the rise in new technologies has allowed us to work virtually and innovate like never before, and the expanded freedom and flexibility of remote work has been an unexpected silver lining of the COVID-19 era for many workers.

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