A diversity workshop is a comprehensive training program that aims to introduce ideas of diversity and inclusion in the workplace. The need for this kind of program has seen a drastic increase as there is an influx of racial and ethnic diversity in the present work culture.
The structure of a good diversity workshop is carried out in a manner that will provide the benefits of creating an inclusive workspace. In addition to this, the program will also contain a rundown of possible strategies that can be implemented.
At present, a typical American office situated in metropolitan cities houses some of the most diverse individuals having different life experiences altogether. This can greatly affect the way they function and interact with co-workers. Therefore, it becomes clear that the company’s productivity as a whole relies on how employees work together.
Any friction that may be present due to underlying reasons will become evident if employees are unable to work together. Keeping this in mind, companies turn to diversity and inclusion training to welcome all the different characteristics of their human resource.
Types of Diversity Workshops
Diversity workshops are designed under several factors and may even differ depending on the needs of the company. These factors include the duration of the workshop, content to be added, the size of the company as well as the industry that the company is present in.
In addition to traditional techniques, there are two common types of training that are in use at the moment:
This is a more traditional approach to diversity training. The basis behind this workshop revolves around the process of compiling the training into small and easier-to-digest segments. This allows an employee to understand the topics better and subsequently be able to adopt the changes that are made. Therefore, aspects like the definitions and objectives become easier to remember.
Another way to give a program more value involves the introduction of gamification. According to this method, the process of training will incentivize the engagement that participants show during the training period. In other words, the employees that react more positively to the policies and ideas are encouraged using certain incentives. Therefore, by introducing this method, there are chances that the employees will learn to work together irrespective of their differences.
Topics Discussed in a Diversity Workshop
A good diversity workshop will include a variety of topics to give an employee the most comprehensive picture of ideal workplace behavior. However, most workshops exclude topics like sexual harassment and other specific topics.
Therefore, the topics covered in a typical diversity workshop include:
- International Inclusion: This topic involves creating action-based plans that will result in positive changes in the workplace. In other words, it outlines the efforts that an employee will have to put in an inclusive workplace.
- Microaggressions: Microaggressions refer to the offensive action that is targeted at marginalized people. These tend to go unnoticed by HR professionals if they are not properly trained.
- Racism: Although the more obvious racist aspects of a company may have been eradicated, there are still subtle remnants left. Therefore, the program will make the employees aware of these remnants.
- Common Stereotypes: The presence of stereotypes is subtle, but it has lasting implications in the grand scheme of things. The workshop will look to enlighten potential stereotypes that one may have and help to break them down.
- Implicit Bias: Implicit bias refers to the preconceived notion that an individual may have towards another employee for the innate attributes they possess. The presence of unconscious bias in the workplace can be detrimental to the harmony that may have been present in the workplace.
- Bystander Intervention: Bystander intervention training refers to helping co-workers stop or intervene in situations that display inappropriate behavior. This can greatly contribute to the reduction of sexual harassment.
- Culture Diversity: One of the main purposes of the diversity training program is to educate employees about other cultures. This can help to reduce prejudices and make employees have an open mind to cultures around they are exposed to.
What to Look for in a Diversity Workshop?
An effective diversity workshop will involve factors that go further than the content it provides. It would involve the following features as well:
- Outline Definitions
The first aspect that a program should possess is clarity in the ideas that it is putting forward. This includes defining terms like diversity, inclusions, sensitivity, and so on. Thus, an employee is capable of becoming more aware of their actions.
- Create a List of Objectives
By disclosing the goals and objectives of the training beforehand, a participant will know what to expect from the training as a whole.
- Includes Employees from Every Level
Some training programs tend to cater to managers or even exclude managers in some cases. However, a good diversity workshop will make sure that it caters to every employee from the highest to the most recent recruit.
- Encourages Discussions
Finally, the workshop should look to make lasting changes to the dynamic of the workplace. This includes the creation of better and more inclusive policies and even diversity committees.
Top 5 Diversity Workshops
Given the number of diversity workshops available at the moment, companies are now spoiled for choice when it comes to choosing a workshop. To make these matters a tad bit easier, here is a list of the top 5 diversity courses.
This diversity training program makes it a point to be as comprehensive as possible. All the topics mentioned above are covered in a manner that is easy to grasp and encourages subsequent fruitful discussions later. The online program is designed by experts and has been previously used to train employees belonging to reputed establishments.
The workshop created here is a three-hour program that possesses gamification features. It encourages engagement from employees through a variety of incentives. It is also a perfect option to train smaller groups of up to 25 to 30 participants. Therefore, larger companies can opt for the microlearning characteristics of diversity training.
This group first started training employees in 2002. What sets Compliance training groups apart from the form of every other training program is that it is affordable. The sensitivity and inclusivity training program that it provides training for an affordable price of around $30 per employee. The programs are accessible to an employee 24 hours a day.
This is an online platform that was created by Cornell University. The diversity training program is one of 80 training programs present on the platform. This program specifically targets the employees present in a state of authority as well as HR personnel. Thus, it gives an HR team the resources that they may need to educate their co-workers.
- Media Partners
This training company was founded in 1993 and has been a leading provider of workshops on diversity training since then. The Diversity 101 program created by Media Partners covers everything from inappropriate behavior to sensitivity training. The best part is that the program is only 36 minutes long and can be used for future meetings as well.
Thus, a company need not view diversity workshops as an inconvenient mandate put forth by the government. Rather, these programs make it possible for employees to be more productive in a safe environment where they can feel accepted.