3 Tools to Help White Men Navigate the Workplace | Vernā Myers

Vernā Myers

14 Mar 2023

3 Tools to Help White Men Navigate the Workplace

Over the last month, we’ve remained focused on the white man’s role in today’s workplace – how it has evolved over the last decade (and even more since the pandemic), what it means to have privilege in today’s society, and how this privilege can be ⁠used for good. 

According to the White Men’s Leadership Study, only 30% of men feel like they are included in the DEI efforts of their organization. This lack of a sense of belonging is often the reason why white men choose not to be as engaged or interested or may even be defensive when it comes to conversations around diversity and inclusion. But organizations need white men now more than ever! 

The fact is, organizations need white men in the conversation not only to be allies for those who have been excluded and marginalized but also to be leaders to other white men who may be struggling to understand their place. It’s all about creating a mutually beneficial connection among all team members. 

So with creating a connection in mind, here are 3 tools and resources to help white men better navigate today’s workplace:


#1: Learn how to be an ally. 

As we said before, the most important thing you can do, as a white male in the workplace, is learning how to be an active ally. Allyship creates a sense of belonging, it opens your perspective and ultimately it breaks down barriers across difference. And it’s vital to build an inclusive workplace that has proven to be more productive and successful in meeting its overall business goals. 

But being a true ally requires commitment and focus on the daily work it requires. By becoming an ally, you are in essence agreeing to be an advocate for others who need your advantage or inherent privilege to advance in their careers. This includes everything from the hiring process to onboarding training to promotions and professional development. It also means that you will speak up when you hear or see something biased or unjust. 

Bottom line – being an ally means you believe that everyone deserves an equal opportunity and you will go the distance to prove it. You will advocate for the rights of others to ensure they are given an equal and inclusive opportunity to succeed in the workplace. 

Need some help making it happen? Head over to LinkedIn Learning to check out their courses on allyship, including Vernā’s course: “Leading Your Org on a Journey of Allyship.” 


#2: Check in with yourself. 

With privilege, comes responsibility and we understand that this pressure can take a toll on the mental well-being of white men in the workplace.  Concerns around men and mental have, unfortunately, been in the headlines a lot these days. Although studies have proven that depression and other mental health concerns impact men of color more often, white men are not immune from its adverse effects. This can impact how white men navigate their day-to-day interactions and opportunities to be more inclusive leaders within the workplace.  But men, particularly white men, are often reluctant to seek help for their mental health issues due to the stigmas in today’s society. 

As Vernā states in her piece on Men & Therapy, “Our culture puts a lot of expectations on men that they should be tough and strong and suffer in silence—that it’s somehow weak or un-masculine to seek help for emotional or psychological issues.”

Here’s a list of some great resources available to help not only build awareness around mental health in men but also provide some valuable support!

  • Heads Up Guys is a men’s depression resource providing young men with information and practical tips to manage and prevent depression.
  • A list of articles and resources from Men’s Health for getting help for anxiety, depression, and other mental health issues.
  • Check out Mental Health America for a free online mental health test, along with resources and helpful DIY tools. 


#3: Take our course, “The Evolving Role of White Men in the Workplace.” 

Led by Vernā, this 24-minute course offers 5 critical tools to help white men better position themselves as an ally through a better understanding of their privilege. The tools offered throughout the course will help white men learn how to leverage their privilege to build a more equitable and inclusive environment by:

  • Building a bridge across difference by creating relationships with people who are not in their “in group”⁠ 
  • Being able and willing to apologize
  • Promoting someone other than the people who are most like you⁠

Get more insight and valuable tools by registering for “The Evolving Role of White Men in the Workplace” today.  We’ll also throw in a TVMC Cotton Shopper Tote for free! Completed our course? Time to pass on the knowledge to a fellow white male who could use the support. 

We hope these tools and resources help you manage the day-to-day of being a better ally and leader in the workplace.