Over the years I’ve talked with a significant number of leaders and employees who view diversity training with skepticism. I've wondered whether this might occur because people have been subjected to diversity training programs that make them feel uncomfortable about who they are or that make them think that they're doing something wrong. Many diversity training programs focus on learning the minutia of how different people behave and what we're supposed to do about it. While I'm the first person to enjoy learning about other people, I can see where it might feel overwhelming to learn how to behave a certain way when you've been doing it another way for a long time.
Diversity training is a golden opportunity to identify what each of your employees does well and then encourage them to do it. It can help us build bridges rather than walls. You also benefit from many different and valuable ideas and perspectives that might be overlooked in a workplace that doesn't value diversity. Imagine the power of having many capable brains available to solve problems or develop new processes or strategies in your organization. You also create a different kind of energy when your diversity training is focused on people's strengths and talents rather than pointing out differences.