I work with a team lead who is dismissive about other races. This person is an American and has no respect for people from other nations. He isn't open about it but his demeanor and candor show his opinions - which are obvious to co-workers and topic of hushed discussions in cubicles.
My company also conducts employee exchange programs and workers from other countries are around all the time. In important technical meetings, the team lead just chooses to ignore any participation from any one who is not an American. IMO, this is causing great loss of ideas to the application we are building and the inherent cascading effect it has. For ex this one guy came up with a brilliant approach to monitor maintaining of the application state on distributed servers. But all the lead said was 'hold that thought' and went about with the meeting. That thought unfortunately never got implemented.
Although, role wise, I know this shouldn't bother me, but is there something I can do which will increase the overall participation AND make the valid inputs count ? Neither am I conducting the meetings nor am I the organizer - just a participant. I am nearly sure this happens all the time in other workplaces. In this case its racial prejudice, else where it might be something else.
I have asked a manager over water cooler chat asking him to come be a part of the meeting and and to lend their 'creative thoughts' secretly hoping the meeting would be efficiently moderated. The manager made it to the meeting - but they are busy with their blackberries and probably deaf to the conversations.
I searched on this site for an existing answer but did not find anything and this is a completely different question primarily since the people I am talking about are developers who present a valid point (or sometimes are cut off while presenting as soon as the outline of the idea is clear) which isn't given its due consideration. Most of them are alien workers and will not push their genuine and sometimes brilliant ideas lest it upset their American counterparts.
EDIT : I was not particularly talking just about Indian coworkers, but colleagues from world over.
Most of them are alien workers and will not push their genuine and sometimes brilliant ideas lest it upset their American counterparts<-- this is exactly what I mean. Americans generally are more willing to "fight" for their ideas. This can be interpreted as their ideas being better than someone who never defends their ideas and so they feel like their ideas are being ignored. It's a difference in communication style. Someone who is a good manager/leader/facilitator will recognize this and act appropriately. Most people don't and if you get a very strong personality they will not.