Companies are putting in all efforts to ensure a sufficient representation of diverse populations among their employees. There is better performance from a company's management and executive employees when there is an equal selection of all people in the workforce. But still, there is a long way to go, because many are not well-employed at the highest levels. The biggest reason for this is that there is not sufficient L&D content for diverse populations. This where the L&D department can play its role and fill the gap. These are the reasons why the L&D content does not engage many employees in the company.
L&D can ensure that the content is suited for minority groups as well. For example, there can be a lack of understanding of L&D content by minority groups. Maybe the diverse groups fail to understand the organizational culture, and no one has attempted to modify the culture to suit their needs. In that case, training is of no use, because the organizational culture itself is not easy to embrace by the sidelined groups. This is the job of HR, who need to prepare proper, unbiased assessments and content when managerial training is needed.
Companies need to clearly assess the qualities required for a future leader, which is particularly important in the case of technological changes. Also, the management and the L&D team need a clear understanding of what the organization needs in a leader, to promote someone to the position according to their attributes, skills, etc. It can be problematic when the L&D content is prepared without keeping in mind the attributes required for a role.
Companies should be ready to get off-the-shelf content that is customized for diverse groups. Hence, when the organization knows what content is necessary, like the kind of organizational values it must promote, they can direct the external L&D vendor to create aligned content. Of course, various factors should be considered while designing such content, like the time available to the employees and what kind of technology they use at home. If such factors are not considered, the L&D budget will be wasted, and employees can’t be promoted to leadership roles.
Simulations play an important part in an eLearning course. But the characters used in simulations are often from the majority community, which does not always click with the target audience. The organizations must use more diverse characters, similar to the general population, for the employees to find them relatable.
It’s a huge responsibility for the L&D department and they must consider employees with different backgrounds. They must study, in detail, the skill levels of the target audience to design a better course. When people from all backgrounds are not considered, it can create problems because the course becomes unimportant. But when the L&D department has conducted its due research, the audience will focus better, resulting in better results. Even games have to be designed considering the target audience.
Before the L&D team decides to begin preparing a program, it needs to take help from these diverse groups, because the latter can help L&D to better understand the kinds of problems they face in using eLearning programs. Was the eLearning so unfocused that they had to understand the organizational culture on their own? The L&D team can also consult with people of different groups to understand if there is a barrier to accessing the program outside the office. eLearning must be an all-inclusive affair, and it needs to take care of the needs of various minorities. When the eLearning program does not engage the minority populations, they are more likely to quit because of a lack of proper onboarding.
In fact, HR has to be taken into consideration to know which particular group is leaving the company, and L&D must also get statistics on which minorities are the least promoted to leadership roles. This way, the L&D teams can modify the leadership training programs. Preparing the program for everyone means acting like a democracy and taking care of all the populations working within the company.
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