Delivering Diversity Training Australia

20th May 2015

Marshall’s has recently delivered a diversity elearning course in Australia, so we caught up with Jude-Martin Etuka, Marshall’s lead consultant in Australia, to find out how Marshall’s courses are going down, down under.

Jude-Martin is a Management Consultant with 10 years progressive experience working in the Human Resource Management and Organisational Development (OD) functions in the private, public and not-for-profit sectors in the UK and Australia.

Tell us a bit about your background and how you made the move from the UK to Australia?

I commenced my career working as a Mental Health Nurse in a number of NHS Institutions and Private Hospitals across London, after which I moved into HR and recruitment after completing studies in Philosophy and Theology, and Human Resource Management.

I worked with Transport for Londonas a Resourcing and Diversity Specialist for approximately 3 years then moved into consulting working for Capita. At Capita, I specialised in Talent Management & Diversity Consulting working with a range of public and private sector clients.

After I left Capita, I set up my own consulting practice for approximately 6 months, after which I moved to Sydney, Australia with my partner.

Whilst in Australia, I initially worked as a Management Consultant for a Diversity Consulting firm and then as an Organisational Development Project Manager for’ Transport for NSW (New South Wales).

It was during this period that I commenced working as a Consultant with Marshall E-Learning.

What are the main differences between diversity training in the UK and Australia?

I think the main difference between diversity in Australia and the UK is that whilst the UK is more advanced in terms of’ e-learning products and services, the appetite for diversity in Australia appears to be greater. This is due to the fact that diversity in Australia is still a growing trend given the socio-historical development of the country compared to the UK.

Indeed, whilst there is clear visible diversity in Australia (I was actually surprised at how visibly diverse Sydney was when I initially arrived), it is still struggling to understand how to positively deal with it. Inclusion therefore is a work in progress.

The UK on the other hand has had enough time to understand its diversity and is working toward creating more inclusive workplaces and to this extent should be more progressive than it currently is. Hence training in the UK tends to focus on workplace inclusion, whereas in Australia, diversity training tends to be more focused on developing an understanding of different cultures.

That having been said, Unconscious Bias, and the Diversity of Thought programs are of keen interest in many Australian organisations signalling an appetite to move toward greater inclusive workplaces.

In certain areas, Australia appears to have a greater appreciation of the theoretical underpinning of diversity compared to the UK. For example, the Diversity of Thought, whilst a big topic in Australia, surprisingly, does not appear to have much traction or interest in the UK.

What could the UK and Australia learn from each other around issues of Equality and Diversity?

I think there are lessons to be learnt in both countries: The UK should greater appreciate and utilise the diversity it has within it. Australia should create a more integrated society and work toward breaking down unnecessary cultural barriers and stereotypes.

Both countries have equal and yet different cultural challenges, which if harnessed positively and strategically in the workplace, would make for truly diverse and inclusive environments.

What is the diversity training course you’re delivering?

My interest is in all areas of people management, including learning and development, talent management, organisational design, and training. I use my specialist experience in diversity to enrich each of the areas aforementioned.

I have also delivered a range of diversity specific training programs throughout my career, including diversity & inclusion, unconscious bias, and diversity of thought programs.

Watch our short video on the workplace benefits of equality and inclusion:

How has your diversity training course been received in Australia?

The diversity training solutions we have provided clients with in Australia has been received with interest. Organisations have been particularly keen in Marshall’s specialist expertise in the utilisation of technology to deploy a range of e-learning courses regardless of geographical location and technological development.

This can be better understood by appreciating just how vast Australia is as a country!

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