Computer Technology Company
Analysis and Solution Design
LENGTH OF ENGAGEMENT
The Client’s goal was to “create a workplace that is more accessible, equitable and attractive to a diverse talent pipeline.” All of the Client’s managers and executives had attended an internal Diversity & Inclusion classroom-based training program and had seen positive, measurable results in diversity and inclusion. Next, they wanted to reach all employees with the D&I initiative, but many were in remote locations and the cost and time impact of bringing them all in to participate was prohibitive. They were looking for a meaningful digital diversity & inclusion learning experience that was global, scalable, self-paced, engaging and immersive. The solution also need to be designed to ensure that the Client could add future modules, team discussion guides, and other curriculum components for maximum impact. They were very interested in having this experience delivered as virtual reality (VR) , and that’s how they presented the project to us.
We worked closely through a process that included a deep content analysis, a deep understanding of the current classroom experience and its impact, and significant research into the use of VR with diversity and inclusion content. Our VR due diligence included conversations over a four week period with several private industry VR experts, and 6 university VR labs doing leading edge work in the space. This experience spoke to the client. With our new found knowledge, we were all convinced that VR was not the right fit for this specific content. In a Design Workshop setting, we worked closely to forge a new path, and a design concept was created. Our plan was a transformative, empathy-inducing, learning journey — consisting of a series of short events or activities, and experienced over time. The experience would leverage platforms and technology currently in the client’s application stack to advance diversity and inclusion on a global basis by creating profound, hit-me-in-the-gut learning moments that affect real change in knowledge, attitudes, and behaviors.
We created an experience that included strategically-designed activities, games, media (video, animations, motion graphics), interactive experiential activities, story sharing, and prompts and opportunities for discussion. Our instructional strategy leveraged these design components:
- Experience – Walk in another person’s shoes and experience “aha” moments.
- Reflect – Pause for self-assessment and reflection that leads to personal growth.
- Discuss – Share stories and points of view that create human interaction and connections.
- Apply – Make personal commitments to apply new insights.
- Tone & Approach – An honest, nonjudgmental, supportive tone would be core to the success of the program.
The program was launched in phases with the hope that the experience will provide a catalyst for emotional and intellectual learning that changes hearts, minds, and behaviors about equality in the workplace. That it will:
- Provide insights about the critical business case for diversity and inclusion
- Offer an enlightening and supportive journey for employees to grapple directly and honestly with challenging subjects
- Promote a collaborative and inclusive style of working together
- Support a culture that encourages bringing one’s full self to work, and where everyone can thrive
- Enable employees to develop meaningful strategies to leverage inclusion in the workplace and beyond.
Is it a meaningful diversity & inclusion learning experience? Only time will tell.