You’re passionate about creating an inclusive organisation? That’s brilliant, but what does that mean in terms of raising awareness?
You might have noticed that at Convergent we have 20 inclusion workshops and more are being added all the time (watch this space!). So where should you start? We can help.
First off – there are two paths you can go down. You can combine them too if that works for your organisation, but let’s keep them separate for now.
A learning journey that raises awareness
Everyone is different. It’s a fundamental part of what makes a global society, but sometimes workplaces don’t reflect that. As we diversify workforces, we need to understand the experiences of these various groups.
So, a learning journey to raise our awareness of the societal realities faced by groups and to understand some of the language out there in the wider world can help build empathy and familiarity – whilst at the same time realising that we mustn’t assume there to be a monolithic or uniform life experience a person has just because they happen to be part of a particular community.
What could an awareness learning journey look like? Here’s an example of one we have curated for Born Social, a global digital agency:
A learning journey that embeds inclusive behaviours
Having awareness about groups is one thing, but how does that influence us when we’re thinking about working with each other and building strong relationships?
If we can learn to understand our biases (rather than fearing them) and embed behaviours that create psychological safety then, step by step, through our daily actions we can create an environment of belonging. This matters because a strong sense of belonging is indelibly linked to feelings of engagement and retention.
But it’s not just about business outcomes, although we know they are important to organisations. We think it’s everyone’s responsibility to play their part in creating belonging – after all, what is the point of enticing people to join you if they aren’t going to be warmly welcomed and valued once they arrive?
Here’s a learning journey we’ve designed for all the people managers at a market research agency to help them embed inclusive behaviours (and understand how to deal with less helpful behaviours too):
- Working with Inclusion and Respect
- Dismantling Bias
- Understanding Cancel Culture
- Developing Inclusive Behaviours
- How to be an Active Bystander
The power of combining both strands
Both paths work.
One leads to greater awareness and empathy about equality, diversity and inclusion (EDI) and people’s experiences.
The other builds greater confidence in engaging in sensitive conversations about EDI and in developing inclusive behaviours.
But combining them leads to super-charged inclusion.
So, if you want to pump some extra power into your engine as you’re going down this path of learning, you can build a journey that brings in subjects from both areas. Delivered over an extended period allows your people to begin to open up to having conversations that can sometimes be uncomfortable – and doing so with greater and greater empathy and understanding.
We know that this works because we see it work with our clients.