Talking about diversity, equity and inclusion (DEI) in the workplace is challenging. These conversations involve differing histories, beliefs, values and perspectives. Discussing these topics can feel uncomfortable if individuals have not had similar conversations in the past. Sensitive topics may surface. Opening dialogues related to DEI is a critical step, though, in creating environments where individuals can achieve a sense of belonging. So, conversation leaders need to be prepared to initiate and manage the conversations effectively and professionally.
Great conversations are built on trust, openness, courage and interest. If conducted effectively, these conversations broaden perspectives, engage team members, strengthen relationships and, ultimately, support achieving organizational objectives and goals. Leaders have the greatest opportunity to facilitate these powerful and engaging exchanges. The resulting dialogue expands perspectives, builds understanding and creates a path to real behavior change.
DEI conversations are often intimidating for managers due to the emotional attachment, the fear of saying the wrong thing or the lack of understanding with DEI topics. They need support to build confidence and to know how to prepare.
The Healthcare Xpress Series is a fast-paced and interactive tool to support leader-led conversations. It provides instructions for opening conversations, creating an inclusive space for discussion and offering ideas for workplace application. These 10-15 minute conversations provide teams with various topics of particular interest based on the group, the environment, current issues or the level of familiarity with DEI within the team. Diversity Xpress also includes a ‘Tough Questions’ section to support leaders in responding to issues often raised by teams during these types of conversations.
The series includes tips for preparing and conducting 12 DEI related conversations including:
- What Is Diversity and Inclusion
- Diversity and Inclusion: Critical Elements for Achieving Our Mission
- What Are We Missing? What Do We See – Or Not See?
- The Impact of Stereotypes
- Using the Pause Button
- How Do I Respond When…?
- The Impact of Words
- What is Culture?
- How Culture Affects Us
- Cultural Collisions
- Bridging Cultural Gaps
- Working Across Language Differences