Speaking Out: Strategies for Inclusion
Aim: A session designed to inspire senior leaders to continue to promote diversity and inclusion – in their teams, in the company and with their customers.
Brief Overview: Diversity – it’s more than how people look. For example, I can talk about how good diversity is and someone else can easily say they are tired of it. I can say, “We need to talk,” and the other can say “Just leave me alone!” So, what is diversity? It includes physical characteristics and identities, but also ways of thinking, personal experience, different opinions – even approaches to working with diversity!
This session addresses the challenge of making sure that our own unconscious needs for safety aren’t causing us to override other peoples’ contribution. In short, it inspires a curiosity and willingness to have dialogue with different views instead of dismissing and marginalising them. This applies as much to internal teams as it does to customers and the session can be tailored to focus on the needs of the client or group.
How: The learning is multi-dimensional: it occurs in theory, practice, discussion, reflection, application and observation. Throughout the session, the facilitator models a way of practising inclusion that both demonstrates good practice and welcomes challenge and difference.
In order to achieve this, the session will include some theory on diversity and inclusion as well as the challenge of unconscious bias. The bulk of the session includes many practical exercises that are aimed specifically at raising awareness, promoting dialogue and getting people outside their comfort zone. This allows them to see and welcome different points of view and time to practice the tools that help them welcome diversity – whether that be in background, thinking style, identity or opinion. Participants will be able to apply this experience when they return to their work, family, friends and colleagues.