DEI Training for the Workforce
What is DEI Training?
DEI training is diversity, equity, and inclusion training which is necessary to building a safe and equitable workplace for all workers. This helps the company to be held accountable and help them to work towards a more inclusive environment for their employees.
This training is necessary for all companies, but especially larger companies with many employees. The companies want a work environment that is good for all their employees and will work to train them the right way. The company will want the DEI training for all employees, and it needs to be done often, not just one time and done.
What Topics Should Be Taught in DEI Training?
There are many topics that can be included in DEI training, and they are all important. Some topics include many things such as what is unconscious and implicit bias, what is the meaning of diversity, equity, and inclusion, are you stereotyping, can you reducing prejudice, can you teach cultural awareness and belonging, you need to be addressing microaggressions, and deal with harassment. There are other subjects that can be taught, as well, that are a part of the above list.
Cultural Humility – A practice of changing the biases and prejudice that are in the workplace that also include your own.
Social Identity Awareness – Using the groups a person belongs to in order to understand who that person is. You can use social identity awareness to help all people feel welcome and understood: https://www.northwestern.edu/searle/initiatives/diversity-equity-inclusion/social-identities.html. This will result in having a happier workforce.
Challenging of Structural Inequalities – Challenging those institutional patterns that can provide advantages or disadvantages depending on race or identity.
Types of DEI Training
Common Ground Training – Training based on looking for similarities in priorities, values, and goals so that everyone can see the common ground.
Facilitated Conversation Training – Creating a non-judgmental space for those who are less likely to speak up so that they feel more comfortable speaking.
Cultural Sensitivity Training – Helps the major culture at your business to understand and empathize with the under-represented cultures of your business.
Unconscious Bias Training – Helps you to learn about the ways in which you subconsciously engage in behavior that is biased or oppressive to others. You can learn a lot about unconscious bias by giving this training. You will even learn about your own biases and how to change them.
Accommodation Training – Empowers those who are diverse to advocate for themselves in relation to how they can be accommodated in the workplace. It will allow those who are different because of their physical abilities, environmental needs, and religion needs to find a way to encompass those differences and feel safer in the environment.
Inclusive Management Training – This training allows managers and supervisors to recognize discrimination or oppression in management practices. It also helps them to change the biased systems that are in the workplace.
Community Engagement Training – Encourages your employees to see the community around them from the DEI lens and see how they can help in the community.
Anti-Oppression Training – This is advanced training that can teach employees to go from ally to collaborator. This can teach them that they can take an active stance in the support of marginalized coworkers. This can include anti-racism, anti-sexism, and anti-transphobia, as well as many others.
Measuring the Impact of DEI Training to See if it is Successful
You can use metrics to determine the impact of your training.
Diversity Percentage in Leadership – How does your upper leadership look in regard to diversity? Is your leadership representative of your workforce? If not, you need to look harder at your training.
Retention – Does your workforce enjoy their jobs? Do they want to continue to work for your company? Do they feel that they have equal opportunities for advancement?
Program Engagement – Are the employees taking advantage of training opportunities and opportunities for mentorship? Has this engagement increased since you implemented DEI training?
Employee Feedback – Do your employees feel that DEI training is working for your company? Do they feel that the company culture has improved? Which community feels that DEI is working, and which feel that it is not working?
The ultimate goal of DEI training is for your employees feel that they are all represented in every aspect of the workforce. You want to make sure that the training is long-lasting and is more than a short-term fix. If it is just a short-term solution, how can you make it has a long-lasting effect? What can you do to make all employees feel that they have a say in what goes on and to let leadership know that they want to be heard? These are questions that need to be answered to see if your training has been successful.
You will need to do ongoing training and not just have the training for just a few weeks, or even a few months. It needs to continue so that your employees know that you are serious about the training and its repercussions. You want everyone to feel valued and heard, especially those in marginalized cultures. You cannot stop your training, or you will never succeed with these goals. You want to make sure every voice is heard and listened to.