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Karamo's Diversity, Equity and Inclusion Training
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By Karamo Brown
8 Lessons
4.6
(22 reviews)
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About this course

Putting inclusion into practice takes more than a diversity statement. Karamo’s course gives your team the actionable steps they can take every day to make a more inclusive workplace. Tags: Karamo , Diversity , Equity , Inclusion , DEI , Queer Eye , Netflix

From the author

Putting inclusion into practice takes more than a diversity statement. Karamo’s course gives your team the actionable steps they can take every day to make a more inclusive workplace. Tags: Karamo , Diversity , Equity , Inclusion , DEI , Queer Eye , Netflix

Karamo's Diversity, Equity and Inclusion Training Lessons

Click through the microlessons below to preview this course. Each lesson is designed to deliver engaging and effective learning to your team in only minutes.

  1. Welcome!
  2. Defining Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion
  3. Explore Your Unconscious Bias
  4. Spotting and Stopping Microaggressions
  5. Inclusion Starts with You!
  6. How to Stand Up for Yourself and Your Co-workers
  7. The Workplace as a Safe Space
  8. Final Word
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Karamo's Diversity, Equity and Inclusion Training course excerpts

Welcome!

Karamo's Diversity, Equity and Inclusion Training Course - Lesson Excerpt

Diversity, Equity and Inclusion With Karamo Brown

Video

Chances are, you didn't define yourself in one word (unless that word is human).

Everyone's existence is complex and made up of many different identities.

This is called intersectionality.

Defining Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion

Let's define these terms, so we are on the same page!

Karamo's Diversity, Equity and Inclusion Training Course - Lesson Excerpt

Defining Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion

Next, let's focus on inclusivity.

You and your team have just finished a huge project. It's taken you all a lot of time and dedication to get it across the finish line.

To celebrate, the CEO invites everyone to drinks at the sports bar after work to discuss next steps.

In what ways was the previous interaction inclusive? Choose all that apply.

Not everyone feels comfortable going to a sports bar. This can be for various reasons — from previous bad experiences to religious or mental health reasons. For example, someone may have a history of alcoholism and going to a bar could be an unsafe space for them.

Important decisions about next steps are taking place after working hours. For those without dependent families, this may be easier to accommodate. For others, who have obligations outside of work, it may not be possible to take part in these discussions.

Drinking can lower inhibitions. This can be uncomfortable to people from different contexts. Even if someone is not drinking, they will have to engage with colleagues who are "getting loose" and may become obnoxious or dangerous.

Diversity requires us all to show up as our authentic selves.

Everyone has an identity. How you define your identity is about as individual as a snowflake.

But we don't live in a bubble (or a snow globe). There are external contexts that change our experience in the world.

These contexts could include being part of a marginalized group or part of a socially dominant one.

And that's why everyone's unique context – our diversity – makes a company stronger. That's why it's important to create a more inclusive space for individuals of all different backgrounds. So, let's do it together!

Explore Your Unconscious Bias

Let's start with the hardest step first.

Karamo's Diversity, Equity and Inclusion Training Course - Lesson Excerpt

Explore Your Unconscious Bias

On this slide, take a moment to reflect on the stereotypes you learned growing up.

Take a moment to think about when you’ve made an assumption about someone based on their class, race, religion, gender, ability, or sexuality.

Now, let go of those assumptions.

Ask yourself: Do I know this person well enough to make this judgment? Are my assumptions based on appearance? Am I being dismissive to this person? Why am I fearful? How would I feel in their shoes?

How does unconscious bias affect our work?

We all have biases. They're formed by the environments we grow up in and in some cases have never been challenged. Becoming aware of them is the first step in being able to address and remove them.

The more we can hire and promote based on data and metrics, and less on "hunches" and the "feeling" of a person, the fairer those practices will become.

If promotions and hiring are based on who we would socialize with or seem most similar to us, we'll most likely be acting on biases deeply embedded in us. This will result in a less diverse and less inclusive company.

Spotting and Stopping Microaggressions

In this lesson, learn how to identify and address microaggressions

Karamo's Diversity, Equity and Inclusion Training Course - Lesson Excerpt

Spotting and Stopping Microaggressions

A co-worker, Tom, who is white, asks Tiffany, who is Asian-American, where she is from. Her response is, "I was born in New Jersey, but grew up in Ohio until I went to college."

Tom responds with, "Right. But where are you from?"

Let's say you witnessed this interaction between Brenda and David. What should your response be?

How can "just a joke" be harmful? It trivializes a person's experience. For David, his upcoming wedding to his partner isn't only a personal moment he's proud to share; it's also the result of years of activism and struggle. It belittles a person's identity. By asking David, "Who is the groom?" it implies that there can only be one groom and that he or his partner would have to be a "bride." The idea that one man in a gay relationship plays the part of a "woman" is a harmful stereotype. And it unfairly questions David's (and his partner's) gender. It has a ripple effect. Even if David feels comfortable enough with Brenda for her to make such a joke, others in the office who identify in the same way might not feel as comfortable. Creating an environment where this becomes the accepted norm can be harmful. It contributes to an unprofessional environment. Our workspace needs to be inclusive and open-minded. Making a joke like the one Brenda made and normalizing this behavior dismisses individual experiences. It can also create a sense of otherness and make team members feel as if they're not valued. This will then impact how they show up at work.

The previous two scenarios were verbal microaggressions.

Environmental microaggressions are less overt. They create an environment of exclusivity and toxic workplace culture. They're also not as obvious as verbal microaggressions.

Other common environmental microaggressions in the office include not having access to all-gender bathrooms.

Or having high-top tables in the cafeteria that may not be accessible to people in wheelchairs.

Behavioral microaggressions can also be subtle. They usually show up as a change in behavior that depends on the people –particularly those of different identities – who are there.

Let's say you are on a video call with your co-worker Larry, and you're pitching a new company product to an older client.

Larry skips over the Artificial Intelligence pitch he usually makes. Afterwards, he explains that the client is an "old guy" and doesn't want to hear about AI technology, just the results of it.

In what way is this a behavioral microaggression?

The best way to fight microaggressions in the workplace, is to check our own. But what if someone else does a microagression?

Let's look at one more scenario.

You're in a company-wide meeting and Michael introduces Carla to present the sales numbers for the month. "As soon as she is ready, I will hand the microphone over to Carla. OK! Here she is!"

You know that Carla is non-binary and uses they/them pronouns. They have their pronouns on their email signature, and others have always used those pronouns when referring to them.

Let's say you commit a microaggression. (It happens!) If you're confronted, keep in mind the following: Listen. Don't get defensive. Try to recognize how the person feels. Operate in good faith. Your co-workers want to create an environment that's safe for everyone, and their intention is not to hurt or embarrass you. It's so you can correct your mistake quickly. You can apologize, but a change in behavior is more important. Thank them for taking their time to educate you, as it's not their responsibility to do so.

Overall, we're all learning. Raising awareness of microaggressions is the first step.

Understand that you may have made a microaggression yourself, and it was probably unintentional.

Forgive yourself and take the necessary steps to change your behavior. By forgiving yourself, you're not putting the burden on someone else to forgive you.

Inclusion Starts with You!

Let's put inclusion into practice.

Karamo's Diversity, Equity and Inclusion Training Course - Lesson Excerpt

Inclusion Starts with You!

Will you make the commitment?

You've already started by taking this course. Take this time to reflect on what you can do to make your workplace safer and more inclusive for your co-workers.

Why is it hard for some people to acknowledge privilege?

The answer to this is complicated and needs to be nuanced. What's important for us to recognize is that we are not born at the same starting point. But we can use our privilege to help others who don't have the same advantages.

These advantages and disadvantages change as contexts do. For example, in a predominantly older company, a young person can be a minority in decision-making.

Make your pronouns public and invite others to do so. By making your pronouns public after your name in places like your email signature, LinkedIn profile or screen name on a video conference, you are modelling inclusive behavior and inviting others to do the same. It sends a message that all genders are welcome, and we should not assume pronouns.

Create or get involved in a skill-share and mentorship program. If you have a skill, offer to share it. Not only will this bridge some of the education gap among team members, but it'll also upskill and help your co-workers have a higher chance of promotion. A mentorship program between leaders and team members is also a great idea to build connections between different levels of the company.

Apply randomly assigned seating. We naturally gravitate towards people similar to us. It can be most noticeable in schools or other social settings. Randomly assigned seating in the workplace allows everyone to create new relationships with people you might not have spoken with before.

Rotate who runs team meetings. Opening up meetings allows for more voices to be heard and it also allows for those who wouldn't normally have a chance to lead to get some practice. This can help you spot talent that might not have had the opportunity otherwise.

How to Stand Up for Yourself and Your Co-workers

Explore the tough questions and the safe way to stand up to bias

Karamo's Diversity, Equity and Inclusion Training Course - Lesson Excerpt

How to Stand Up for Yourself and Your Co-workers

Everyone deserves a safe place to work! It's up to us to make this happen. There are some steps we can take to confront bias safely.

If you choose to confront the microaggressor, here are some steps to make the conversation safe for all parties involved. Calm yourself. You want to take this on with a clear head. Use the breathing exercise if it helps. 2. Find a private place to speak with the person you're confronting. This is about correcting behavior and making sure it doesn't happen again. Not making a public display. 3. Clearly state the situation and why it was wrong. When doing so, remember to criticize the action, not the person directly. For example, "That joke is sexist." Not, "You're sexist." 4. Listen to their perspective, and don't repeat points you've already stated. Let them express where they are coming from. 5. Have a plan of action for the next time a triggering event or a similar situation occurs. Your goal here is to have a commitment to change. This creates accountability. Remember, don't apologize for confronting racism, sexism, ableism, homophobia, or any sort of prejudice and systemic injustice. If we don't confront it, it'll continue to be the accepted norm.

In tough times, we feel the need to reach out to each other. Either in a show of solidarity or our support.

But it's not always helpful. Sometimes what people need is space.

For example, during the protests after the murder of George Floyd by Derek Chauvin, many white allies felt the need to reach out to their Black friends and acquaintances.

Some people felt this was supportive. Others were annoyed by the sudden attention.

In times like these, look for physical cues from your co-workers. Do they just need space? Who are you making feel better by showing your solidarity at that moment?

The Workplace as a Safe Space

Practicing psychological safety is something we can all do

Karamo's Diversity, Equity and Inclusion Training Course - Lesson Excerpt

The Workplace as a Safe Space

Having a safe space at work means all of our coworkers can authentically be themselves without fear of judgement or repercussions.

We should be judged by our performance, not by our identities. Ultimately, creating a space like this takes a commitment from all of us.

We need to affirm that there are certain behaviors we will not take part in. And we also need to proactively make space for our co-workers.

By acknowledging and uprooting our prejudices, we are fixing the source of problematic speech and actions. In other words...

“Do the best you can until you know better. Then when you know better, do better.” - Maya Angelou

By doing the work you've done in this course, you are starting the journey towards a more diverse, inclusive and equitable workplace and life. This is not going to end here, but allow this to be a new beginning.

Know that you've already started on this process. If your co-workers have taken this course, then they have as well.

Understand that discrimination is psychologically exhausting.

Whether implicit or explicit, macro- or microaggressive, systems of oppression take a tremendous psychological and emotional toll on a person's health.

Give your coworkers the space when they need it. And if you need space, take it.

You do not need to tell anyone on your team specific reasons why you need a day off. It can be as simple as "I'm taking a day to myself."

Final Word

Karamo's Diversity, Equity and Inclusion Training Course - Lesson Excerpt

Final Word With Karamo Brown

Course media gallery

Karamo's Diversity, Equity and Inclusion Training

Karamo Brown

Karamo Brown is best known for his role as the culture expert in Netflix’s Queer Eye. He has previously worked with the White House to create legislation that supports LGBT+ youth after school and is on the advisory board of OutRight International — a global LGBT+ human rights organization.

I've done a lot of DEI courses in my time and this is definitely one of the better ones.

Course rating

I expected more depth to the program.

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