"We want to deliver Equality & Diversity Training, so that we can 'Tick the box' and show compliance.." But will this add long-term benefits and really change your culture and importantly your peoples behaviours? I believe the answer is a resounding no unless this type of training is directly linked to your company values.
More and more, working with our clients we have linked all of the training we do to the values already in place - this helps reinforce them, and ensures the E&D sessions we deliver are much more than tick-box and more about changing behaviours for the long-term. After all, as trainers we are not the 'thought Police' and in 2.5 hours cannot change how people think but we can influence how they behave if they understand the impact their behaviour and comments are having on others. We can do this through observational sessions allowing people to look in on work based conversations and then discuss how this made them feel - we use real case studies aswell to really add to the impact. Suddenly, being on the receiving end of negative conversations and feeling this adds a different dimension.
Good diversity management is also good business.
Many organisations have an Equality policy in place, but how do your team deliver this day in and day out? It is after all down to them to be the ambassadors of your policy in order for it to really change the culture and attitudes towards others.
Most companies and organisations believe that a policy alone is sufficient to cover them but actually evidencing that your teams understand their personal role in delivering this might be required and could lead to significant bad publicity and financial costs if anyone gets it wrong. How does £125,000 sound for getting it wrong?
Regularly we read in the press and hear on the news about major companies and small business getting things wrong through ignorance, bad planning, poor training or lack of policy and/or understanding.
In 2010 the UK Government introduced The Equality Act 2010. This act “legally protects people from discrimination in the workplace and in wider society”
It replaced previous anti-discrimination laws with a single Act, making the law easier to understand and strengthening protection in some situations. It sets out the different ways in which it’s unlawful to treat someone.
The training of staff is an important signal that an employer is committed to embedding equality and diversity. And this is key - embedding it - thats why e ALWAYS link it to values - usually companies have trust or respect or open or honest - this is what respecting diversity in the workplace is about.
The benefits of a robust E& D program for the organisation include:
- Promotion of organisational reputation
- Supporting recruitment and retention
- Increasing productivity
- Mitigation of risk
The ted E&D course, provides employees with an understanding of what E&D means, and how the Equality Act 2010 impacts them. Featuring the EDWheel and Edopoly. Actors bring to life the 9 protected characteristics through observational role-play.
I passionately believe that in giving your team a full understanding of the Equality Act you will: -
- Help them understand their specific role in creating and delivering a positive culture where diversity is respected,
- Create confidence to challenge unacceptable behaviour (no matter who this is coming from)
- Greatly reduce the risk to your business – financial, publicity wise, tribunal
- Embed your values into your business
- Protect your business from claims