A practical guide to help managers to tackle racial injustice in their workplaces has been released by the Chartered Management Institute.
Moving the Dial on Race: A Practical Guide on Workplace Inclusion gives advice on issues including prioritising anti-racism, talking about race, ending micro-aggressions and raising awareness skills.
The 50-page guide was produced in the wake of Black Lives Matter protests following the death of George Floyd, which, it said, had “sparked conversations, heightened awareness and renewed a commitment by many organisations to make their workplace more equitable.”
The report includes examples from leaders including Professor Nic Beech, a member of the CMI’s Race Advisory Committee, who said that to encourage conversations about race, managers should create “magic moments in meetings where people feel safe to share their lived experience in a free-flowing and authentic manner, such that people don’t mind deviating from the meeting agenda.”
Professor Beech, who is the Vice-Chancellor of Middlesex University and the President of the British Academy of Management, said that the action he had personally taken that had had the most impact on promoting race equality at work was bringing in reverse mentoring, in which senior staff learn from their junior colleagues.
“Having the willingness as a leader to listen and use reverse mentoring to see things from the eyes of the people who have really lived the experience. That really brings things to life.”
The report builds on a joint publication, Delivering Diversity, produced by BAM and the CMI in 2017, which set out the economic reasons why diversity in the workplace should be a critical issue for every organisation.
Moving the Dial on Race quotes recent research that found that only half of managers had had conversations with their team about racial justice and equality in society, and only a third had spoken to their team about their organisation’s response to the Black Lives Matter movement.
Delroy Beverley a CMI Race Advisory Committee member, said in the report: “What matters to me now is when are we really going to move the dial? We have been banging our heads against a brick wall for most of our lives. The time has come to pull those walls down!”