Course Detail: P_UNCONSCIOUSBIAS - Unconscious Bias: The Leader's Perspective

We make hundreds of decisions every day in favor of one group or individual and to the detriment of another, without even realizing we are doing it. This is happening to all of us, even when we are consciously committed to inclusion. Being biased is just the way our unconscious brains work.  Unfortunately, this plays out in recruiting, interviewing, hiring, conducting performance discussions, mentoring, making job assignments, offering promotions, deciding organizational policies, ways we treat customers, conducting marketing campaigns, deciding who gets growth opportunities, and even listening to other's ideas.

Research is beginning to show that this unconscious bias is insidious and can negatively impact the organization's culture and financial success without anyone realizing it.  So, for organizations to thrive, it is crucial to understand how and where this bias comes from, how it manifests itself, and how to increase awareness of it in order to mitigate it.

In this highly interactive and guilt-free workshop we'll explore how we miss seeing our various biases.  To shine a light on them we'll discuss inclusive policies to take our unconscious brains out of the equation.  We'll also explore behavioral strategies that can affirm, welcome and connect us to those who are different than us.   In adopting these policies and behaviors, we'll be treating our colleagues, hiring candidates, clients and others with honor, respect and dignity so they and our organization can realize their full potential.

Learning Objectives:

  • Describe how we all have unconscious bias and defuse the need to feel defensive about it
  • Define unconscious bias, its natural scientific basis, its financial impact and the micro-inequities it can produce
  • Delineate common forms of unconscious bias and their cultural impact in the workplace
  • Identify policies that can mitigate the impact of unconscious bias in common work practices
  • Explore and practice practical inclusion strategies and behaviors to produce more empathy, respect and greater valuing of people different than us

How This Program Differs from Traditional Diversity Training Workshops

Research is starting to reveal that traditional diversity programs are not always effective.  In fact, some participants leave those programs feeling defensive and with a greater degree of bias than before attending.  This workshop, on the other hand, focuses on the unconscious bias that every one of us has and is designed specifically to not produce a defensive response.

The University of Southern Maine is recognized by SHRM to offer Professional Development Credits (PDCs) for the SHRM-CPSM or SHRM-SCPSM.

The registration fee includes all materials.

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Available Sessions