When we create diversity and inclusion training programmes, we need intimate knowledge of the individuals and groups we are creating them for. We need to be aware that people operate within layers of different systems and it is vital that we understand how this affects their world views.
We need to be in touch with the overall perspectives from which people see and interpret the world, as well as the collection of beliefs they hold about the world. This will enable us to start the conversation during diversity and inclusion training at a place that is meaningful to individuals and groups. We therefore cannot ignore cultural differences during diversity and inclusion management. Having cultural understanding gives us critical insight into what drives people to think, behave, and respond in particular ways.
Bringing it all together
Culture touches us in terms of how we see and experience the past, present, and future. It is only when we delve into critical aspects of culture that we better understand our underlying orientations that colour our world significantly. What we value with regard to the environment for example is very much a function of our culture in terms of prized dynamics such as harmony, control, power, respect, needs for certainty and trust, etc.
Diversity training online is the starting point of better getting to grips with the myriad of intricate cultural nuances that can shape our perspectives as well as our actions. Differences such as focus on the external versus the internal can be perceived in new ways by sharing cultural perspectives during diversity and inclusion training. We bring participants to a state of acceptance that not everyone is driven by the same factors.
Many of us are “being” rather than “doing” orientated, having less concern for outward results and accolades. Peace, serenity, and calmness are more highly cherished by some than rewards and recognition. With the right cultural insights, we may no longer be surprised or troubled by our observations in other people, leading to greater acceptance and appreciation.
No simple equations
Creating diversity and inclusion training programmes that have cultural empathy at their core create greater consideration for others. We learn why certain people treasure things like private or public space and what is appropriate to them in terms of how they might express emotions for example. Not everyone is highly exuberant when happy and joyful. Many people may be quite content with being inhibited and isolated. By coming to terms with significant cultural differences, we obtain a greater appreciation and tolerance for uniqueness with the comfort that comes with knowing we don’t all have to fit into one pre-set mould.
Online diversity training for employees is extremely illuminating when capturing different cultures and world views. Relationships can take on new meaning as we grapple with what it means to be individualistic versus wanting to be part of a bigger community or collective. We begin to see that perhaps our competitive biases are not shared by everyone and that many people gain much more satisfaction from being cooperative. Creating diversity and inclusion programmes that expand our thinking when it comes to matters such as the importance of egalitarianism and the pitfalls of hierarchy help to dispel fixed notions of right and wrong.
Quickly we begin to accept that there are many different forms of achievement and that for many a simple acknowledgement of worth provides sufficient dignity, allowing for self-esteem in contribution. There is an immediate appreciation that there simply is no one recipe for success and growth.
At the end of the day, the most important feature when creating diversity and inclusion training programmes is that they are holistic with the ability to speak to the broadest range of individuals and groups. What is complex in culture and world views needs to be unpacked simplistically so that all can become more attuned to others with the desire to expand dialogue that brings with it greater wisdom and cohesiveness.