Page Updated on January 1, 2024

Benefits of EDI diversity employee training
>> From the EDI Diversity training materials

Before talking about the benefits of EDI, let’s just first clarify what EDI is.

What Is EDI in the Workplace?

EDI in the workplace refers to Equality, Diversity, and Inclusion.

Both for legal and moral reasons, it is important that your workplace offers equal opportunities for all employees, regardless of their background, age, ethnicity, and gender.

Employees at all levels within the company should also feel that they work in a safe environment and that they feel included and treated fairly.

From the perspective of managers and leaders, EDI involves providing people with fair and equal opportunities in the hiring process, building a work environment for your team that makes everyone feel included, and where psychological safety exists in your team.

8 Benefits for Employees in Being Given EDI Training

Staff diversity training

1. Better job satisfaction

A company that fosters EDI allows you to express yourself and to develop and you, as a result, will tend to be happier with your job.

2. More opportunities for personal and professional growth

In a company that values EDI, you are usually allowed to develop to your full potential, whatever your background. In addition, working in a diverse and inclusive company gives you the opportunity to be exposed to a multitude of ideas that can broaden your horizons.

3. Fairer opportunities

EDI implementation allows all employees to have equal access to opportunities for development and promotion.

4. Better safety

EDI policies help create an environment at work that is safe and in which harassment and discrimination are not acceptable.

As an employee, this sense of being in a safe working environment where you can easily express yourself and be open with ideas and suggestions makes for a much more comfortable workplace.

5. A feeling that you belong

As you feel valued and able to express yourself at work, you may tend to feel a sense of belonging to the organization and, therefore, be happier at work.

6. The ability to work more effectively with your colleagues

Diverse and inclusive teams often work better together as respect for each other’s unique experiences and viewpoints can lead to more effective teamwork.

7. Less stress

Feeling accepted and valued, getting on better with your colleagues, and being able to develop are all factors that are likely to make you less stressed at work.

8. Networking opportunities

An environment that supports EDI can open up networking opportunities with diverse groups and individuals.

Networking opportunities mean more possibilities for you and this can be a positive way to connect and build useful and meaningful relationships at work that can help you to succeed and advance your career.

Benefits of Training Managers in EDI Diversity

Teaching managers to manage workplace diversity

Training managers in EDI provides the manager in question with many benefits including:

1. Skills development

A commitment to EDI can help you develop crucial management skills such as empathy, communication, adaptability, and cultural competence.

2. Better decision-making

By being exposed to a variety of points of view and experiences, you should be able to draw from a wider range of ideas to make more informed decisions.

This can improve your effectiveness as a manager and leader.

3. Improved leadership image

By promoting EDI, you demonstrate that you are a fair, inclusive, and forward-thinking leader.

This can enhance your reputation within your organization and in your broader professional network.

4. Conflict resolution

Understanding and appreciating the diverse backgrounds and experiences of your team members can equip you with the tools to effectively mediate and resolve conflicts, creating a more harmonious working environment.

5. Cultural intelligence

Managing a diverse team can greatly develop your cultural intelligence skills. This is the ability to understand, relate and effectively work in different cultural scenarios.

It’s a vital skill in our increasingly globalized world and can make you a more effective and sought-after leader.

6. Better ability to motivate your team

When you champion EDI, you create an environment where all team members feel recognized and valued for their unique contributions.

This can boost morale and motivation, not only within your team but also for you as a leader, knowing that you are cultivating a positive and inclusive work culture.

Benefits of Providing EDI Diversity Training for the Company

As a company, there are also many benefits in providing EDI training in your organization:

1. Adhering to ethical principles

EDI’s principles are ethically the right thing to uphold, in terms of guaranteeing that everybody is treated with respect.

2. Employees are more engaged and productive

Employees tend to be much happier when they are working for a company where they feel valued.

3. Market expansion and a better understanding of a wider range of customers

As the workforce is diverse, they will reflect the diversity of potential customers and better understand their needs.

4. Better reputation and stronger brand appeal

Diversity and inclusion are moral issues and a company that embraces EDI is seen and is likely to be more ethical.

5. Legal compliance

Following EDI principles will ensure that a company is compliant with EDI legislation that is in place in many countries.

6. Attract and retain top talent

A company that promotes EDI has a wider pool of talent to choose from and its employees will be motivated to stay.

Diversity as a Business

In addition to these business advantages, a diverse and inclusive company can tap into the following four global trends.

1. Diversity of markets

Due to the projected increase in the number of people classified as being middle class, particularly in Asia but also in Africa and South America, the system of supply and demand will grow. To reach customers in such diverse areas, companies need to have a good cross-cultural understanding and understanding of diverse political systems and economies. Having a diverse workforce will help them achieve that.

2. Diversity of customers

The customer base is destined to become more and more diverse. In addition, customers have become more empowered, due to the widespread use of digital technologies for shopping and increasing options for individualized products and services.

3. Diversity of ideas

To be competitive, companies must be creative and innovative. So, they need leaders who encourage creativity and diversity of perspective and take suggestions on board from a diverse workforce.

4. Diversity of talent

An inclusive company can retain a diverse workforce. Demographic shifts such as migration patterns, changes in population age profiles, and education will influence the composition of the workforce, which will be more and more diverse.

Examples of Equality, Diversity, and Inclusion in the Workplace

Office diversity

1. Equality Scenario

The Problem

In “Panvico Solutions,” a green technology company, there’s a noticeable gender gap in leadership roles. Despite equal qualifications, women are underrepresented in higher positions whereas men in the company dominate the leadership roles.

The Scenario

In a recent review of promotions, it became evident that out of ten senior positions available, only two were filled by women, despite several qualified female candidates.

Solution

“Panvico Solutions” decided to implement a structured mentoring program aimed specifically at nurturing leadership skills among women employees.

This program provided female employees with access to senior leaders as mentors, offered networking opportunities, equipped them with the necessary skills, and supported them in advancing their careers.

Furthermore, the company sets targets and metrics to track the progress of gender parity in leadership roles.

2. Diversity Scenario

The Problem

At “Locono Dynamics” a software development company, there’s a lack of diversity in the workforce, particularly in terms of ethnicity and cultural backgrounds. The majority of the team comprises individuals from similar cultural backgrounds, limiting perspectives, and innovative ideas.

The Scenario

During a recent team brainstorming session, it became apparent that the solutions presented were quite similar, lacking the depth and diversity of perspectives needed for comprehensive problem-solving.

Solution

“Locono Dynamics” decided to implement a diversity recruitment strategy that actively sought out candidates from various cultural backgrounds.

They partnered with organizations that focus on minority groups in the tech industry, attended and still do attend diverse job fairs, and revised their job descriptions to attract a more diverse pool of applicants.

Additionally, the company provided an absolute Beginners EDI training session for all employees, because a lot of employees were not even aware of the term EDI and didn’t have any understanding of the basics of why inclusion, diversity, and equality are so important.

Given that some of these employees might also go on in the future to be managers and team leaders, this training should be valuable.

Already in a short time, Locono Dynamics is seeing a great sense of inclusion amongst employees as they begin to understand the effects and importance of workplace EDI.

3. Inclusion Scenario

The Problem

In “Pattemore Wellness Inc.,” a well-being company, there are instances where introverted employees feel excluded from team activities and decision-making processes. This exclusion affects their sense of belonging and their ability to contribute effectively.

The Scenario

During team meetings, quieter team members, like Patrick, rarely voice their opinions, leading to a lack of diverse input in critical discussions.

The Solution

“Pattemore Wellness Inc.” forms an inclusion focus group/task force aimed at better representing all departments, with someone/people from each department and team.

This task force is responsible for evaluating the inclusivity of team activities, meetings, and decision-making processes.

They introduced anonymous suggestion boxes and online forums where employees like Patrick can contribute their ideas and concerns.

Additionally, the company established communication guidelines that encourage all team members to actively seek input from everyone during meetings, ensuring that diverse perspectives are heard and valued.

These solutions aim to address specific issues related to equality, diversity, and inclusion in the workplace, fostering a more equitable, diverse, and inclusive environment for all employees.

4. Equality Scenario

The Problem

“Lang HealthCare” notices a disparity in promotions and opportunities based on age.

Younger employees seem to progress faster in their careers compared to their older colleagues, despite similar qualifications and performance levels.

The Scenario

In recent performance evaluations, older employees, like Maria and John, who have years of experience, received positive feedback and demonstrated excellent skills, yet they were overlooked for promotions.

Solution

“Lang HealthCare” implemented a mentorship program that pairs younger and older employees, fostering cross-generational knowledge transfer. This initiative encouraged mutual learning and appreciation for different perspectives.

Additionally, the company revised its promotion criteria to focus more on skills, experience, and contributions rather than age, ensuring a fairer evaluation process for all employees.

5. Diversity Scenario

The Problem

At “PanItalian Solutions Ltd.,” there’s a lack of representation of individuals with disabilities in the workforce, hindering the company’s goal of fostering a truly diverse environment.

The Scenario

During recruitment drives and job postings, there’s a noticeable absence of accommodations or information about the company’s commitment to accommodating individuals with disabilities, inadvertently dissuading potential applicants.

Solution

“PanItalian Solutions Ltd.” revised its recruitment strategy by partnering with organizations supporting individuals with disabilities.

They also updated their job postings to explicitly mention their commitment to providing an inclusive workplace and accommodations for people with disabilities. Moreover, the company invested in making its physical workspace and digital tools more accessible to accommodate diverse needs.

6. Inclusion Scenario

The Problem

In “Martock Tech,” a technology startup, remote employees often feel disconnected and excluded from the main office culture and decision-making processes, impacting their sense of belonging and involvement.

The Scenario

Remote team members, such as Sarah and Alex, feel left out of impromptu discussions and decisions made during in-person team meetings at the main office.

Solution

“Martock Tech” implemented virtual meeting guidelines that ensure equal participation and decision-making opportunities for both in-office and remote employees.

They introduced more inclusive practices such as holding meetings at different times of the day to accommodate different time zones and using collaboration tools that facilitate real-time contributions from remote team members.

Additionally, the company holds regular virtual team-building activities that involve all employees, regardless of their location, fostering a sense of inclusivity and belonging.

These solutions aim to tackle distinct challenges related to equality, diversity, and inclusion in the workplace, promoting a more equitable, diverse, and inclusive environment for all employees.

What Types of Training Can You Provide Employees with to Teach Them about EDI (Equality, Diversity and Inclusion)?

Diversity training basics

There are several types of training sessions that you can use to effectively educate employees about Equality, Diversity, and Inclusion (EDI).

At the very least, managers and team leaders should have some basic understanding of how to create an inclusive workplace, that embraces equality and diversity.

1. Leadership Training

Leadership Training: Specifically tailored for managers and leaders, focusing on their role in fostering an inclusive workplace. This might cover strategies for creating diverse teams, mitigating biases in decision-making, and promoting an inclusive culture.

Some suggestions on EDi training for employees include either classroom-based or online training in:

2. Training for All Employees

  • A short 1-2 hr workshop on the absolute basics of EDI for all employees (given that oftentimes, from conversations with training managers, many employees have a complete lack of understanding on even the basics of equality, diversity, and inclusion).
  • Teaching Unconscious Bias techniques – useful for ALL employees but even more essential for managers, given that they are the ones who hire others and also set workloads and deal with promotions. We all have biases based on our background and upbringing but it is essential that we have an awareness when it comes to how to manage and deal with others in the workplace, to ensure fairness and equality.
  • An Allyship training session for 1 to 2 hours can help in teaching employees how to be effective allies to marginalized groups. This involves understanding privilege, advocating for inclusion, and supporting colleagues facing discrimination.
Diversity and inclusion basics training materials
>> Diversity and inclusion basics training materials
Dr Valeria (Lo Iacono) Symonds
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