Dialogue is crucial if we are to reduce bias and create inclusive workplaces. Sadly, conversations about diversity don’t happen as often as they should. This is because we lack the skills needed to have those conversations with respect and honesty. Because we don’t have the skills, we are afraid to try.
In order to increase dialogue, we must expose our teams to skills including:
- How to set productive goals for conversations.
- When it is appropriate to speak up and when it is wiser to walk away.
- How to overcome the emotions that stifle our ability to think on our feet and communicate effectively.
- What words to use that will promote rather than hinder conversation.
- How to think about intent versus impact and the importance of assuming positive intent in another’s actions or words.