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Recruitment:Unconscious Bias

“Unconscious Bias” Just another buzzword or a recruitment reality?

You may think that “unconscious bias” is just another overused business buzz-phrase, but it is actually alive and kicking in many, many businesses. Taking your own organisation as an example, are you creating diverse teams, are you seeing diverse candidates in your hiring process? If the answer is “no”, then why is that? It actually stems from the moment a CV hits the desk of your recruitment team and their preconceived ideas of inclusion and diversity!

Diversity and inclusion are extremely important factors to any business, essentially because they are a major drivers towards revenue and profits – which is generally the bottom line for most organisations. Companies that rate within the top third of businesses for racial and ethnic diversity are more likely to have financial returns that are above the national average for their industry and the same is true for companies leading their industry in gender diversity, with 15% of them experiencing healthy financial returns.

These statistics really can’t be ignored, so how can you improve your recruitment process and weed out the ever-present “unconscious bias”?

We have broken down the answer into three parts:

Understanding

Is your recruiting team forwarding you CV’s with diverse names? Employers can’t hire diverse teams if the recruiting team isn’t forwarding diverse candidates.

Awareness training is the first step to unravelling unconscious bias because it allows employees to recognise that everyone possesses them and in turn helps them to identify their own.

Conversation

Make sure diversity is part of your daily workplace conversations. The idea is to create an organisational conversation about biases and help spark ideas on steps your organisation as a whole can take to minimise them. Diversity has to be part of your company’s DNA.

When recruiting make sure at the interview, candidates see for themselves just how much your company values diversity; ensure that they see this in the hiring panel (where one interviewer will always be diverse), state that employee benefits are offered to same-sex domestic partners and that the organisation as a whole advocates for social causes and is making efforts that advance diversity.

Implementation

If you want to have a diverse workforce you need to integrate diversity recruiting into your brand through social media, advertising initiatives and your interaction with potential employee sources such as schools, colleges, networking circles and other targeted organisations.

Also, job descriptions play an important role in recruiting talent and often provide the first impression of a company’s culture, the most subtle wording choices can have a strong impact on your pool of potential job candidates! Masculine language such as competitive, determined, may result in women perceiving that they would not belong in the work environment. On the other hand, words like collaborative, cooperative, tend to draw more women than men. There are also software programmes available that highlight stereotypically gendered words and either remove them or replace them with something more neutral.

As a business, you must improve your efforts to attract and hire candidates from diverse backgrounds without simply “ticking a box.” Here at Corporate Drama we can help you by using our interactive, dynamic learning experiences with business role-play actors and your specific workplace challenges. We make training memorable, transferable and measurable.

They say that ‘practice makes perfect.’ But theory in a classroom is not practice… actually doing something different is. So, the best way to improve your staff’s management, leadership, influencing, customer service or selling skills is to create as close to a real-life environment as possible.

Our Corporate Drama team of facilitators, coaches and business actors bring something very different to each client project. All of our team have ‘walked the walk’ working in the real world of business, with all of its politics, pressures and relationship challenges. This means your people have a very different training experience, one that is as close to real-life as possible. This gives them the confidence to put the ‘practice into action’ back in their ever-challenging working environments.

Here at Corporate Drama we develop authentic leaders, managers and teams. Our programmes re-energise, re-focus and re-engage your people. We dramatically transform workplace training leaving a measurable, visible impact throughout your entire organisation.

How can we help you and your people?

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