If you are reading this blog, you are likely interested in, and committed to the ideals of IDEA (Inclusion, Diversity, Equity and Accessibility). But while many of us get the broad strokes, we can get tripped up putting these ideals into action. How do we move through the world in a graciously inclusive way? How do we handle this tricky situation? How can we get better at this in real life?

These are excellent questions.

Programs like those Encounter offers provide information and insights to help us think about inclusion, equity and accessibility in big picture ways. We help participants gain the confidence they need to open interesting conversations, feel comfortable making connections and consider how they can support inclusion in their communities and organizations. But often we get asked what we call “when the rubber meets the road” questions that require a more nuanced discussion of a particular situation.

Responding gracefully to those everyday moments takes more than just information – it takes practice. Should we speak up in a meeting, or address the situation privately? When do we call people out versus calling them in? What if our assumptions are wrong and lead us to missteps or micro-aggressions despite our best intentions? What if we, pardon the pun, step in it ourselves – how do we make appropriate amends?

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The supported practice piece is what has been missing in IDEA programs – until now. We are absolutely delighted to announce that Encounter is partnering with Dialectic Solutions, a leader in e-learning and in IDEA initiatives. Dialectic has a fantastic, leading-edge micro-learning product called Snippets and we have been working with them on a new religious literacy module. We’re thrilled with the partnership and the end product because it is:

  • Quick: Small bite-sized learning “snippets” that take about 2-minutes of your time arrive in your email or to an app on your phone.
  • Scenario-Based: we often learn by doing so Snippets are workplace scenarios where you read the situation and make choices. Each choice leads to outcomes, allowing participants to practice applying what they learn in an enjoyable and natural way.
  • Time-Based: The program sends Snippets once/week over several weeks as research shows learning is internalized better if we can ingest it over time, allowing the ideas to settle more deeply into our brains.
  • Comprehensive: Each snippet comes with options for further learning if you want to know more.
  • Measurable: The platform measures improvement among employees and collects data (anonymously) so management can see what areas might need further attention and what links are generating the most interest.

As their subject matter expert for the new religious literacy offering, I had an insider’s view into the impressive level of research and consideration they put into developing each of the scenarios. The scenarios are realistic and create opportunities for authentic learning, not just for the religious literacy program but for all their offerings including ones on Anti-Black Racism, Inclusivity and Gender Identity.

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Snippets is designed ideally to be paired with longer training sessions allowing in-person or virtual training sessions to be supported by follow up micro-learning that takes just a couple of minutes a week, done when it best suits the employee.

Religious inclusion was not part of the corporate conversation ten or even seven years ago. But, as Bob Dylan prophesied, the times are a-changin.’ It is very good to see this and valuable for our society as we increasingly work, live and learn in diverse environments. We have been nothing but pleased with our experience with Dialectic and their skilled and knowledgeable staff. We’re grateful for their work in this realm and are pleased to be able to offer their micro-learning programs to our workplace clients. If you or your employer would like to know more, feel free to reach out. We would love to have a conversation.

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