Women of Color Get Asked to Do More “Office Housework.” Here’s How to Say No

by Ruchika Tulshyan

Selena Rezvani was in an all-day strategy session when she faced a challenge many women of color are intimately familiar with: She was expected to arrange lunch for everyone present.

Simultaneously, seven heads in the room turned toward her, the only nonwhite person in the room, to place the order. “No one seemed to consider asking the white guy next to me who was my [same] age and level,” recalls Rezvani, now VP of consulting and research at Be Leaderly, and author of Pushback. “The silent agreement in the room was unnerving.”

The Problem

The unwavering conviction that it was the duty of the woman of color to do less-important tasks around the ...

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