Diversity: What it is & What it isn't - Tilson


Diversity: What it is & What it isn’t

Diversity & Inclusion, Training & Performance | February 2015

When organizations approach us regarding diversity training or diversity awareness, it is fascinating to learn what diversity means to them. There are a wide variety of interpretations of diversity, everything from affirmative action initiatives, to sensitivity training, to anti-discrimination.

Dictionary.com defines “diversity” as:

  1. the state or fact of being diverse; difference; unlikeness
  2. variety; multiformity a point of difference
  3. a point of difference

Tilson’s Diversity Training seeks to encourage recognition of differences, appreciation of differences, and appropriate responses when differences are identified. This encompasses the legally protected areas of race, color, religion, sex, national origin, age, disability, veteran status, etc.; it also encompasses more subtle differences in grocery preferences, clothing, tattoos, piercings and accents.

Diversity does not mean seeking to make everyone the same, nor is it a formal affirmative action hiring initiative. It also is not sensitivity training, as that implies individuals are intending to be insensitive. Instead, it’s remembering that each individual is unique and brings his/her own life experiences into who they are, and interacting appropriately with others who have had very different life experiences.

If your organization could benefit from Tilson’s Diversity Training, please contact us and we’ll be happy to assist!

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