The first step to mitigating unconscious biases in the work culture of a company, is to communicate with your team.
A firm statement to employees and shareholders establishes organizational values. Be
sure to stay accountable to any consequences of violations you establish with your team.
This statement should also include some sort of plan to take actionable steps to address unconscious bias. If this means starting with a training program of some kind. It is also important that everyone, from management down to the most recently hired employee, participate. This assists in the realization that everyone has these biases, and now the goal is to stop letting biases affect us
The leaders and managers of the company have an even greater responsibility to the employees to provide a healthy workplace. The top leaders are the ones that must insist on the workplace culture that the company follows, and be the examples to the rest of the business.
Encourage participation by picking an appropriate time and location that is accessible to everyone in the organization and highlight the positive effects of these programs. An important step to a successful unconscious bias training seminar for the employees is encouraging participation, not only in the meeting itself, but also in creating updated workplace policies.
Allowing employees an open forum to discuss and explore these biases is important. It can also be useful to conduct of research to gather feedback from employees. To do this research, consider conducting an anonymous survey. Every employee must be given the opportunity to participate in the data collection without disclosing their identity. These surveys not only gather information, they also increase participation and create opportunities to build awareness. Some questions
in the survey could include:
Do you feel like you can voice your opinion in this workplace?
Do you feel like you are fairly evaluated by your superiors?
Do you feel like there are biases in the workplace?
Would you be willing to participate in a diversity training seminar?
This information can be useful when planning out training programs that are well suited to the challenges your team faces regarding unconscious bias.
by Katelyn Roy