Diversity Training Tips – 11 Essentials
With your organization’s workforce becoming more diverse every day, you’ll need to embrace diversity training best practices to create a truly inclusive workplace.From basic diversity awareness, to developing valuable diversity cultural skills, your company’s success depends on providing the right tools and support to maximize every employees’ development and performance – and to minimize your legal risks.
To have an effective diversity training program, here are 11 diversity and inclusion training tips:
- Diversity as a Daily Practice: doing diversity training for a couple hours – once or twice a year – will not boost awareness and inclusion. To have an effective diversity program, awareness and inclusion must be part of the everyday workplace.
- Be Clear About Training Goals: Training materials are often selected without a good fit with the goals they are meant to promote. An essential diversity training best practice is to make your goals as clear as possible. Think about what you want the audience to take away from training. If possible, choose training materials that have a pre-and post-test to measure progress.
- Get Support From All Levels: Get top management support before you begin any serious diversity training effort. You’ll need buy-in from above to get the support and resources you need. You’ll also need to promote diversity training to your constituents. and convince people that diversity training is in their best interest.
- Aim For Respectful, Tolerant Behavior: The goal is effective, productive team-work. Diversity training helps in crucial ways to diminish and/or eliminate many of the barriers to such team work, such as the different types of unconscious bias
- Get the Right Materials for Your Audience: Different people and workplaces require different types of training and materials. Avoid trying to adapt training materials created for a purpose different than yours. Take advantage of the wide range of materials available today
- Leverage New Technologies: Be sure to try new training technologies such as online diversity training. Both are cost-effective, efficient, and provide useful evaluation tools.
- Engaging – For training to be effective, you must engage your audience. Enjoy exploring ways to engage your team, from interactive learning tools to dynamic, in-person team activities. Diversity training videos can be a great tools for making training lively and vibrant
- Post-Assessment: Be sure to build in a follow-up evaluation after the training in order to enjoy continuous training improvement. Keep your options open and flexible to adapt to results from the on-going training experience.
- Diversity Events – A key component to an effective diversity program is organization-wide awareness of key diversity events. This offers many benefits, including higher productivity, easier scheduling, and holiday planning, as well as ensuring diversity groups receive proper respect. A specialized calendar provides a complete listing of diversity events.
- Diversity: More Than Just Cultural Facts: Different customs, proper greetings, and modes of observance are important for raising diversity awareness. However, diversity training is more than just recognizing holidays and facts about diverse people and religious, ethnic, and cultural groups.
- Be Patient: Effective change takes time, but it provides a high return on your investment. Make sure that training is more than an isolated or occasional event. It needs to be part of an on-going program supported by a variety of non-training efforts. Options include affinity groups, mentoring programs, talent development plans, and recruitment and retention.