Current Events Work Happier

From General Mills to Merck, World’s Top CEOs Pledge to Bring Unconscious Bias Training to their People

Written by Glenda Felden

Back in January, Grovo named 2017 the year of diversity training, and for the first time, we released our microlearning curriculum on unconscious bias to the public—for free! These 20 lessons enable learners to examine and address the latent prejudices and predispositions that affect thinking, behavior, and decision making in the workplace.

While many companies in the United States strive to create more diverse workplaces, the reality is that fewer than 20% of organizations offer education and training about unconscious bias to their employees. Grovo’s goal is to help move the needle and increase the number of companies offering critical training on the topic.

Last week, we were thrilled to see the launch of the inaugural CEO Action for Diversity & Inclusion, with over 150 of the world’s top brands—companies like American Express, AT&T, IBM, PepsiCo, Delta Airlines, Publicis Groupe, Wyndham Worldwide, and more—committing to implementing and expanding unconscious bias training at their companies. The pledge is led by a steering committee that includes the CEOs of Accenture, BCG, Deloitte US, The Executive Leadership Council, EY, General Atlantic, KPMG, New York Life, Procter & Gamble, and PwC.

From the pledge:

Experts tell us that we all have unconscious biases–that is human nature. Unconscious bias education enables individuals to begin recognizing, acknowledging, and therefore minimizing any potential blind spots he or she might have, but wasn’t aware of previously…. By helping our employees recognize and minimize their blind spots, we aim to facilitate more open and honest conversations.

“As leaders in corporate America, we need to do more to open doors,” said Cargill Chairman and CEO Dave MacLennan, in a release about why the company joined the initiative. “Diverse teams deliver better business results and can create connections beyond the workplace that foster better understanding and more connected communities.”

We couldn’t agree more. Bersin by Deloitte, a leading research and advisory services firm, has noted that “companies that embrace diversity and inclusion in all aspects of their business statistically outperform their peers.” These companies have 2.3 times higher cash flow per employee over a three-year period, and are nearly twice as likely to be change-ready and innovation leaders in their market.

In developing our unconscious bias learning curriculum, Grovo conducted extensive external research and consulted with leading industry experts, including:

  • Holly Brittingham, SVP, Global Talent & Organization Development at FCB Global
  • Corey Flournoy, VP, Associate Director, Global Talent Development at FCB Global
  • Ernie Aguilar, Consultant and Career Expert on Bias, Diversity and Culture

“At FCB, we’ve used education about unconscious bias to focus on developing an inclusive culture and to examine our responsibility as marketers in shaping messages that influence broader society. We’re thrilled to help Grovo bring this critical content to a wider audience,” said Holly Brittingham, SVP, global talent & organization development, at advertising agency FCB Global.

Grovo’s in-house team of instructional designers, storytellers, and producers engineered our unconscious bias training using Grovo’s Microlearning Method—digestible, bite-sized lessons that blend video, assessments, and realistic practice to spark aha moments. Through these small, focused steps, employees develop the skills and habits they need to succeed.

Lessons within Grovo’s unconscious bias learning module address questions and issues around why it’s hard to talk about bias, the science of bias, the impact of bias on decision making, what it takes to change our actions, how to keep bias from influencing work, and more.

Are you ready to bring unconscious training to your organization? Access all 20 free Grovo lessons at unconsciousbias.work and join the CEO Action Pledge for Diversity and Inclusion here.