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Strategies for promoting inclusivity
How to address unconscious bias
How to create a diverse and inclusive workplace
Managers can be more successful by focusing on:
The potential for project success can be improved significantly through transformational leadership (inspiring and encouraging staff to create positive change through innovation) and team building.
Team building provides some of the essential skills, training, and resources needed to work together effectively and cohesively. To be most fruitful, it should be part of ongoing development (individual, team, and organizational) and at the heart of the organization’s culture.
Before embarking on designing and running team-building exercises, it is essential to understand the needs of the group.
While there are many ways of running team-building events, there is a set of roles that are common to most exercises:
The Stepping Forward Exercise can be the perfect way to begin or end a team-building day and understand the needs of all in attendance.
Once the exercise is complete, the team-building day can start, taking into account the needs of all in attendance.
If used at the end of the day, ask each person whether the day met their expectations. Their responses can shape future training or generate appropriate follow-ups and information that may help.
Breaking down barriers and having fun in a team setting can be hugely beneficial for creating a team that works well together and is resilient to change and challenge.
The Human Typewriter Exercise is a fun way of involving all the team equally in a joint activity while working toward a common goal – in this case, typing a message.
The exercise has no formal purpose other than to create a little fun, break the ice, and attempt to communicate in a very different way.
Most meetings and training sessions involve sitting in one place for longer than is comfortable. Before and during a session, it can be useful to get people moving to change the social dynamics and stimulate new interactions.
The Creating Shapes Exercise gets people out of their chairs and moving and interacting in very different ways.
For the Blindfold Guiding Exercise, divide the team into pairs and assign one the role of the blindfolded walker with the other as a guide.
The guide, while walking behind the walker, guides the walker around the room using only spoken instructions, such as turning to the right, stepping to the left, and keeping moving forward, to avoid obstacles.
Creating an element of personal risk (albeit minimal) can help build trust and break down barriers within a group.
The Trust Fall Exercise requires no materials and is easy to explain; though it may be useful to demonstrate in front of the group to gain trust in the activity.
The group is split into pairs; one will be the catcher, and the other will be the person who will fall.
The Getting to Know One Another Exercise can help build understanding, leading to more openness when sharing information.
The team forms into pairs and shares a story of a blunder. Their partner and ultimately the rest of the group are asked to remember and repeat the story.
Good communication is a great place to start and can be encouraged through nonverbal behaviour such as making eye contact. After all, looking someone in the eye is important for showing both vulnerability and confidence.
Try out the Making Eye Contact Exercise for a great way to begin a day of training or break-outs during focused work sessions.
A work culture that encourages open and positive feedback fosters growth by supporting the open discussion of opportunities and concerns.
The Back Writing Exercise offers a safe, light-hearted approach to providing feedback. It is an ideal icebreaker when team members have met before but are still learning about one another.
Telling stories can be a great way to break down barriers, especially when we use our imagination to make things seem a little more interesting.
The True and False Exercise involves each participant telling two true stories and a fictional third. The listeners are then asked to judge what is false and true.
Variations include having two fake stories and one real one, or one long story that starts true and the listeners guess when it starts to become fake.
Online team building can be crucial to removing barriers and improving cooperation and communication.
The Getting to Know One Another Exercise can easily be moved online by asking team members to share their blunder stories with their partners on a one-to-one call before joining the group video call.
The True and False Exercise is an excellent fit for a video call. Each speaker can prepare several stories, and people can vote on their truthfulness by either shouting out or using a group chat function.
These games work for any age group of children or youths:
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