Many organizations state diversity and inclusion policies as core business principles, yet stating a case doesn’t necessarily make it so. Implementing a company-wide policy that promotes cultural awareness, respect and appreciation for every member of the workforce, no matter their background, race, religion, age or gender, requires a proactive approach that necessitates collaboration with those in leadership roles, as well as at grassroots level, training for all employees and a conscious company culture that encourages diversity in all its forms.
At Creative Word Training, we understand the challenges that organizations face when creating and supporting a diversity and inclusion policy, and we offer useful and productive strategies for training teams to overcome unconscious bias, improve cooperation, aid cultural understanding and promote mindful working practices.
We would like to share some of our smart strategies for creating an inclusive workplace with you here, with the aim of encouraging empathy, awareness, open communication and respect for others in every organization.
Cultural Awareness Training
If your organization already has a diversity and inclusion policy in place, the next step is to ensure it is understood and recognised by all employees.
The most effective way to educate your team about your policies and ethics is to offer cultural awareness training.
Courses designed and delivered by the Creative Word team include a variety of the following tools for incorporating cultural awareness in the workplace:
• Methods for adapting when working interculturally
• Personal intercultural development plans
• Motivation and rewards for intercultural awareness
• Discovering relationships between culture and communication
• Exploring different methods of communication in multicultural environments
• Investigating and assessing personal unconscious bias
• Evaluating the cost to business of unconscious bias
These tools encourage self-assessment, allowing individuals to evaluate their own prejudices and inspire thought-provoking methods for overcoming these.
Cultural awareness training helps firms erase bias from the dominant workplace culture, replacing it with an inclusive, tolerant and understanding ethos.
Inspire with Diverse and Inclusive Leaders
Those in leadership and management roles should have clear expectations for their organization’s diversity and inclusivity policy, track their teams progress (including structured procedures for reporting problems) and encourage positive working relationships with all team members.
Having culturally diverse leaders who reflect the changing landscape of multicultural organizations is essential and has been shown to improve effectiveness of engaging with target audiences and customers.
In order for real change to occur within any organization there should be a drive from the top down to encourage diversity and make for a more inclusive company culture.
The following points can help create a workplace environment that is fully appreciative and understanding of cultural difference:
• Encourage Team Building – create team building opportunities whenever possible to encourage a supportive and empathic company culture of ‘one team’
• Facilitate Multicultural Work Celebrations and Calendars – help teams celebrate Christmas, Diwali, Eid, Ramadan, Easter and so on, by encouraging shared celebration days. This could be as simple as the giving of cards, or a more elaborate shared monthly lunch
• Create a Culture Team – who can help organise special cultural events, share news, promote inclusion and celebrate diversity
• Provide a Cultural Mentorship Program – pair those from diverse backgrounds or under-represented groups with more experienced, empathic mentors and leaders. This can improve confidence, progress and growth for those in minority groups
A diverse workforce is more adept at problem solving, boosts performance, increases customer satisfaction and quickly becomes an asset to their organization.
Creative word Training have been helping organizations create inclusive workforces for more than 15 years and can help with cultural awareness, leadership, soft skills and more with bespoke and E-Learning options available for courses.
Please contact a member of our team if you would like more details or to sign up for any of our courses.