Let’s Talk about Race in the Workplace

2nd October 2020

Creating business e-learning courses on the topic of diversity has been our speciality for 18 years. This year, many of our clients asked us for a module which specifically helps cultivate a constructive and candid conversation about race in the workplace – something that digs deeper than unconscious bias and diversity.

So we were delighted when Maggie Semple, OBE, agreed to author and host the course for us. Maggie’s expertise and experience within this field has enabled us to produce an e-learning module which explores what it is to be a non-white person in today’s working world.

Our course looks at the experiences of black people in the workplace and the impact of white privilege and micro-inequities.. Workplaces can be hugely important in tackling the issues of structural and individual racism.

By their nature, workplaces tend to be more diverse than the social circles held by individuals. So, by ensuring inclusive hiring and management processes, employees will collaborate with a broader range of people that will challenge potentially previously held notions of stereotypes and other biases.

Learners will hear the first-hand experiences of black people in the workplace and will be given strategies and tips for confronting their own biases and mitigating them. The purpose of the course is to persuade the learner that racism isn’t just explicit racist language, abuse or discrimination and that racism also takes the form of inequalities and inadvertent biases that are embedded in organisations and in society. Learners will come away from the course with an increased sense of the need to consciously and pro-actively address racial bias within their organisation.

The course will help you and your staff to:

  • understand what unconscious racial bias is;
  • describe what is meant by white privilege;
  • list the differences between ‘in groups’ and ‘out groups’;
  • recognise racial microaggressions;
  • describe how an organisation can either reverse or perpetuate racial bias depending on its actions/inactions.

Systemic racial biases vs explicit racist behaviour

In the course, we look at 7 key areas of racism and how both individuals and organisations can address and mitigate racial issues in the workplace:

  • unconscious racial bias
  • white privilege
  • racial micro-aggressions
  • tokenism
  • where to start as an individual and an organisation
  • systemic racial biases vs explicit racist behaviour
  • ending racism.

Behavioural change after completing the module

As a result of completing the course, learners will want to seek out further knowledge and skills in the area of race. For example, they may go on to take specific anti-bias training, they may take an unconscious bias test and so on.

Organisations can also start to review and remedy their policies and procedures (management, operational, recruitment, career development, training procedures and so on) to address racial bias.

Together, the organisation and the learner can begin to identify, challenge and reduce systemic racial inequalities and individual biased behaviours.

Who should take this course?

The module is a 20-minute introduction, aimed at organisations within the UK and is designed to awaken the learner to up-to-date thinking on race in society and the workplace.

The course shows learners the connections and encourages them to continue their learning on the subject (e.g. lots of signposting to further materials). The module is focused on internal management of the organisation rather than customer-facing interactions.

The module is designed to respond to  questions and statements such as ‘Why do we need to take diversity training?’, ‘What can we do better here?’, ‘People aren’t racist here’ or ‘We don’t see colour in this organisation’.

Want to find out more?

The Let’s Talk about Race in the Workplace course is designed to support organisations in talking about race and racism with their teams. You can watch a preview of this brand-new course here.

Call: 0845 123 3909

Or get in touch using our contact form.


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