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Understanding Unconscious Bias at Work

Most organisations know that if they want to maintain growth and retain top talent, they need to ensure the workplace is genuinely inclusive and truly represents their diverse client base.  

Most organisations also have policies in place to combat discrimination in the workplace and to create equality of opportunity. 

And yet the statistics tell a different story… for example, only 6 companies in the FTSE 100 have a female CEO or Chairman, only 8% of partners in Law Firms are from an ethnic minority background (diversity league table). Clearly the fact that people believe they do not and should not discriminate, does not stack up against the figures.

Unconscious bias has come to the fore as a way of explaining this contradiction and to show how easy it is for us all to make assumptions about people and situations, which may not be true.

In order to create a diverse workforce and to build a truly inclusive workplace, where everyone feels valued (not just in terms of the protected characteristics, but also in terms of experience, personality, approach) we need to remove barriers to our thinking and decision-making.  

Our interactive workshops will help to…

  • Raise awareness around our biases and how they may play out in the firm (e.g. hiring new staff, allocating work, deciding on promotions and career development)  
  • Raise awareness around the impact of behaviour, language and non-verbal communication on others – changing approaches where needed to ensure everyone feels included
  • Empower managers to challenge when necessary – creating open, honest conversations around behaviour and ensuring managers are role modelling the “right” behaviours

 

Aim

The aim of this session is to help participants gain an understanding of unconscious bias, how it exists within all of us and the business case for reducing the impact. It will help to pinpoint where bias can creep into communication and decision making and identify what actions to take as a result.

Objectives

During the session participants will have the opportunity to...

  • Consider what unconscious bias is and how to recognise it in ourselves
    • Using visual exercises and videos to identify our own biases
    • Identifying the business case for eradicating bias
    • Discuss the implications of not taking action
  • Identify where and how bias impacts decision making in the organisation
  • Identify specific actions which everyone can take to create a truly inclusive workplace
    • An emphasis on “Inclusion nudges”
    • The responsibility of Managers to lead from the front
    • Committing to personal and organisation-wide actions