Respect and Inclusion in the Workplace: Supervisors’ Session (Online & In-Person, Denver Based)

Learning Objectives:
Upon completion of this program, participants will be able to:

  • Provide information about “why” it is important for organizations to focus on creating an inclusive work culture.
  • Provide participants with an understanding of what an inclusive, respectful environment “looks like” and conversely what a non-inclusive environment “looks” and “feels like”. (Will include a discussion of characteristics that comprise an inclusive work environment.)
  • Provide participants with information about how to create and maintain an inclusive, respectful work environment.
  • Provide supervisors/managers with knowledge about how to identify barriers and/or workplace issues or concerns that can work to undermine an organization’s goal to promote an inclusive work environment (e.g., what are the potential “red flags” that may arise and what goes into deciding about how to address the issue?)
  • Provide information about the difference between inappropriate behavior, unprofessional behavior, and illegal harassing behavior.  (Will include a brief discussion of the Civil Rights law and workplace harassment.)
  • Provide participants with an understanding of how inclusive work cultures are co-created and the concept of “raising the bar” and moving toward exceptional enlightened behavior.
  • Review the role of supervisors/managers as “agents of the company” in supporting an organization that is respectful, inclusive, and free of harassment.
  • Provide an opportunity for participants to practice making good judgments via a small group exercise that utilizes real-to-life diversity-related workplace scenarios addressed from a supervisory perspective.
  • Highlight the importance of communication when managing in a diverse work culture.
  • Discuss key behaviors and competencies of managers who support an inclusive environment
Course Outline:


  • Review Agenda and Session Objectives
  • Brief Participant Introductions
  • Icebreaker (Constructivist Listening Exercise)
  • Listening is an important bridge in building understanding across differences. Dyad exercise.  The facilitator introduces the topic to be shared and models for the participants. Individuals are paired off: one person speaks for five minutes, the other listens.  The facilitator keeps time. After five minutes, the pair switches roles.  The facilitator debriefs the exercise.

Why are Inclusion and Respect important in today’s workplace?

  • Lecturette: key diversity concepts (mono-cultural and multicultural)
  • Small group exercise:  Compare and contrast the benefits and drawbacks for an organization that does focus on diversity and one that does not
  • Lecturette: Business case for an inclusive, respectful workplace

What are diversity and inclusion?

  • Lecturette: Everyone is included in our diverse workforce
  • Dimensions of Diversity
  • Complexity of Diversity (e.g., within culture differences, level in the organization, etc.)
  • Cross-cultural misinterpretation

What is an inclusive work environment (and conversely what is not)?

  • Small group exercise: Review of characteristics of an inclusive work culture and characteristics of those that are not inclusive
  • Characteristics of an inclusive vs. non-inclusive work environment
  • Review of the “Inclusive Competency Scale”
  • Stages of organizational and individual development about inclusion


  • Lecturette and Small Group Exercise: The Role of Respect in the Workplace
  • What is respect?  How do we know when we are accepted and valued?
  • What is the role of non-verbal communication? (e.g., meta-messages, micro/macro messages and F.I.E.: Fact, Interpretation, Evaluation)
  • The distinctions between inappropriate, unprofessional, and illegal behavior
  • Review of Workplace Harassment Laws
  • Examples and discussion about “gray areas” related to potential harassment: dating, flirting, innuendos, posters, jokes, screensavers, use of Internet, e-mail jokes, etc.
  • Process for clarifying if the situation may be one of harassment or general employee issues
  • The spectrum of work behaviors and organizational climates: Raising the Bar (fostering a more enlightened culture)
  • Fostering an Inclusive, Respectful Work Environment
  • Behaviors and actions that support an inclusive, respectful organization work environment such as speaking up on behalf of others (ally behavior), holding each other accountable, addressing situations, listening, practicing acceptance, what it means to be a role model, willingness to learn, open-mindedness, etc.
  • Communication Model (R.E.S.P.E.C.T.)
    • R:  Remember the goals (what you’re hoping to accomplish) of the communication
    • E:  Establish a safe environment
    • S:   Take steps to support mutual sharing
    • P:   Present your point of view in a respectful, straightforward, non-defensive way
    • E:  Expect to listen
    • C:  Clarify next steps and actions
    • T:  Together, follow through on mutual commitments or acknowledge understanding

Skill Application

  • Small group exercise: Supervisors are given a set of scenarios about diversity-related management issues to address.  The facilitator will provide coaching and feedback.


  • Summary closing comments by the facilitator

Course Length:
1/2 Day