Companies Need to Think Bigger Than Diversity Training

Posted on October 26th, 2020

The authors of the article in the Harvard Business Review observed that typical diversity training not only fails to promote diversity in the workplace, but even leads to reduced diversity in companies.

At the end of September 2020, Donald Trump ordered that Federal agencies, and companies and universities with Federal contracts should not provide diversity training on systemic racism and sexism. This naturally led to significant debate on the freedom of speech and the value of equality in the workplace.

The authors of this Harvard Business Review article approach the topic from a different angle. They look at the effectiveness and impact of diversity training. The authors analysed data from more than a hundred employers over more than 12 years on the effectiveness of different equality measures, and concluded that traditional diversity training does not lead to improved equality and diversity in the workplace as is commonly thought, but on the contrary – it actually diminishes workplace diversity.

The research suggests that alternative and often simple management measures and actions have proven to be more effective in achieving a workforce with equal opportunities. For example: “Targeted recruitment, mentoring programs, open skills and management training and diversity task forces.”

Read the full article here.

Source: Kalev, A., Dobbin, F., “Companies Need to Think Bigger Than Diversity Training”, Harvard Business Review, October 20, 2020.

Image source: Shana Novak/Getty Images

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