More than ever, businesses are encountering a diverse workforce. Diversity training can improve corporate culture and ensure that you are respectful and attentive to the needs of everyone that works at your company. Here are some tips to make sure that diversity training is effective in your business.
Consider Making Training Voluntary
While many companies provide mandatory diversity training, this can make some people feel as if they are being forced to do something they don't want to do. Instead, think about making diversity training optional and encouraging everyone to take part.
Have Specific Goals in Mind
When you are putting together your diversity program, you have to start with goals. What is the point of the training? Do you want your employees to get along better? Do you want to make your management team more diverse? Having specific goals will help you to tailor a diversity training program that is specific to the needs of your company.
While diversity training typically includes some discussion of relevant laws and requirements regarding discrimination, it is important that your diversity training goes beyond lecturing employees and managers about the law. Instead, look for ways to get them to interact with you and each other.
You might, for example, have everyone do trust-building exercises first, so that they feel more comfortable interacting with each other. Blind hikes and other team-building exercises can set the stage for a more open, relaxed environment in which people are more likely to share their feelings and experiences.
Encourage Managers to be Proactive
Rather than telling managers what they are doing wrong regarding diversity, encourage them to take actions that will foster a positive experience for everyone. For instance, you may implement mentoring programs or outreach programs that allow managers to reach out to women and minorities and actively help them on a day to day basis. This will make the managers feel as if they are contributing to someone else's success, and those mentored will get a greater understanding of what they need to do to succeed.
It is crucial that you seek feedback from your employees about how effective they think diversity training is. Ask them for their own ideas about to best implement diversity training in the workplace. This will empower your employees and help you ensure that your efforts are not going to waste.
For more information, contact DiversityInc or a similar organization.