HigHly EffEctivE

of

Habits

What do you do with your diversity programs after the workshops and seminars are finished? Many organizations believe that once the training session is held, diversity and inclusion will follow. But Diversity Trainers know that the real business of building diversity programs is in

DivErsitytraining
Experiential Diversity Education
W.W. Grainger Makes Training a Habit, Not an Event
aFrICan-aMErICan author Dr. Maya angelou once said, “People will forget what you say… and people will forget what you did… but people will never forget how you made them feel.” W.W. grainger, Inc. has taken those words to heart in designing inclusion and diversity training programs that feature experiential education integrated into the very way the company does business. “We call it ‘action learning,’” says Kim Cysewski, grainger’s VP of Human resources. “That’s because people are far more receptive to valuing differences and translating that to our customers when they can experience it directly, rather than being told or shown.”
Recipe for Success

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January/February 2010

each group, they had an opportunity to do on-site research with representatives of the different audiences, and their results were judged by members of grainger’s employee affinity networks, called Business resource groups (Brgs), representing each constituency. The exercise, called “recipe for Success,” was conducted in the grainger headquarters’ campus cafeteria and required each team to determine the ingredients and appearance for the pizza, create its package design, develop a 30-second advertising spot, and deliver it in an appropriate way. and then they had to execute their plan, all in the space of three hours.
Rave Reviews

The most recent example came during a teambuilding exercise for the two hundred members of the u.S. leadership team, and it all centered around making a pizza. Teams were formed to develop a pizza product for one of seven different groups—african americans, asian Pacific Islanders, latinos, Women, Baby Boomers, generation Xers, and Millenials. They were armed with demographic information about
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Pro f i les i n D i ve rsit y Journal

“This was a fabulously successful education program,” Cysewski says. “People not only had fun, but they learned more about how to build relationships with other people, understand their unique needs, and collaborate to deliver distinctive products attractive to them. and this is exactly what we’re working to achieve in our actual business.” Mike zeller, grainger’s Director of Territory Sales, made a clear connection to the work he does every day. “This exercise really helps us to think about the customer and how to put them first. That way, we can figure out how we can reach them by being more relevant to them.”

managing them after their inception. Diversity Training needs to become a habit—not just an event. Habit, by definition, is an acquired behavior pattern regularly followed until it becomes automatic. Make diversity training a habit in your organization, and diversity awareness will automatically follow. W.W Grainger has, by concentrating on training activities that continue to build a constant awareness of diversity. Discover their “Recipe for Success!”

and Erwin Cruz, an Enterprise architect and Vice President of the asian Pacific Islander Brg, observed that the work teams also enhanced their understanding of inclusion and diversity. “We saw the teams ask the right questions to ensure that they understood their customers and were creating a product for that particular market.”
Integrated Education

Grainger leaders participating in Recipe for Success

This exercise, which gave business leaders a true feel for the value of inclusion and diversity, is one example of grainger’s habit of integrating this important concept into the business, according to Chere nabor, Chief Diversity Officer. “Integrated education is the cornerstone to bring inclusion and diversity to life in the organization,” nabor says. “Where diversity training is typically an event that is included at specific times—like employee orientation and then later as a person enters management—we leverage every training opportunity along the continuum to increase awareness among our employees.” This means inclusion and diversity is threaded throughout grainger’s training curriculum, encomnabor passing sales, customer sevice, compliance, brand, supply chain, product knowedge, leadership, several talent management programs, and employee development. “Inclusion and diversity is becoming a conversation we deal with every day as a matter of habit,” says John lawson, Director of grainger’s

Training/Development department. “The appreciation of diversity that makes us unique in the marketplace is aligned and embedded in every training and education program.”
Dedicated Trainer Liaison

That alignment is ensured by a dedicated team of training staff who have immersed themselves in the inclusion and diversity culture, and they ensure that these principles are incorporated into every other training course. They include Mary Fasone, training program manager; Mahelet Senbetta, training designer; and naticia anderson, training delivery manager. “We participate in each of our Brgs, as well as outside seminars and courses in inclusion and diversity,” Fasone says. “We bring all this information together to incorporate it into all of our training programs.”
Prof iles in Div er s it y Jou r na l January/February 2010

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Senbetta sees it as a “tremendous opportunity” to integrate inclusion and diversity into everything as a matter of habit. anderson sees her immersion into inclusion and diversity as an aid to her personal development, as well as a strong component to use in delivering her sales training courses. “When you build people’s knowledge of diversity, you enable them to work better with our diverse customers.”
E-Learning for All

them to create the appropriate training and development programs,” Marshall says. “at the same time, they bring an insight into our business and an understanding of emerging markets, so they can contribute to the company’s growth as well.” nabor adds that the company’s recent Brg Summit was an exceptional tool in educating the organization on the value of inclusion and diversity. “There is a lot of power that is amplified all the more from bringing everyone together.”

nabor also points out that, while educating managers Suits and Corporate Ladders through leadership training is important, grainger has also developed a diversity e-learning program, “a Business ImSuits and Corporate Ladders perative,” available to every person in the organization. $ 97 96 95 94 93 91 92 98 r 99 “Employees can go online and learn about grainger’s ne win 0 Instructions object How to play the 10finally, to demonstrate how inclusion and diversity game: and commitment to inclusion and diversity through an interac$ contributes to 83 $ 84 85 86 87 nabor created the company’s success, 88 89 90 tive training course that’s available right at their desktop,” 82 81 setup “Suits and Corporate ladders”—a board game that she says. ? ? leverages the78 about the squares 74 73 72 71 an concept of76 popular children’s game as a 75 In addition to this formal e-learning program, employ79 80 All 77 educational tool. ees also converse with each other through a Twitter-like Players62 63 on colored spaces pick68 cards 70 landing 64 65 66 67 up 69 that program called “yammer,” an in-house, online communica61 contain quotes and facts and figures about inclusion and tion facility. There are as many as 340 threads posted on a Contents ? diversity. When they advance up a54 53 they earn boladder, Winning51 game weekly basis, according to lawson, who says it brings people the 59 57 56 55 52 58 60 nuses, talent stars and promotions—and when they hit from the geographically dispersed company together, and ? ? $ also provides a link for members of the Brgs. the most Talent Stars and Diversity Dollars or a chute, the business is punished by fines, lawsuits, $or To collect 41 42 43 44 45 46 47 Instructions object be the first player to reach the #100 “Winner” bonus square. business. How to play the game: 48 49 50 lost For 2 to 4 players 1. Roll the dice to decide which player goes first. The player Business Resource Groups ? with the highest number goes first. Feel free to use the spinner $ Position the gameboard so that all the players can easily “People are often surprised when they learn that Suits and Corporate Ladders is a game designed grainger’s Brgsofare similar to manysetup companies’ square to square. Everyone chooses 39 38 wheel as an alternative method.35 34 33 32 31 other move their pawns from diver37 36 40 to share the business advantages an inclusive workforce. a pawn to play. Any extra pawns are out of play. Chosen pawns experience every included on the cards is somePlayers are shown the potential rewards for implementing 2. Each player should take turns spinning the wheel to determine start each the board area near sity best practices of inclusion and diversity as they climb up the the networks, but they are distinctive in that off outside of of them square #1. Get ready for fun! the number of spaces to move forward. Follow the numbering ladders of Limitless Growth. The pitfalls of Stagnant Growth on the board happens in corporate america,” thing that actually and be mindful of$the board’s zigzag path! serve as consequences for unwise decisions. is open to anyone whoAllisabout the squares interested in 21 30 23 29 22 3. Remember, 24 28 26 or 27 nabor says. “We’ve yourtopawn mustthe that falllearning by doing is a found land on aorgreendownorange square in order climb up ladder the board. Although this game is based oninsightspin”, luck of gaining “theThe mainthe into a particular group.the gameboard. The squares are numbered Take a brief moment to look over players should not be discouraged! goal of the ? from 1 to 100. Players’ pawns will move back and forth across the board in tool.” valuable an game is to ensure a wide range of outcomes that will help upward and zig-zag fashion. The squares indicate nichole Marshall, grainger’s Inclusionare color coded to20 which to build awareness of the objective, strategies, and values 19 action should be taken. Please note the following: of inclusion and diversity. Indeed, 18 17 16 education is the key to experiential 15 14 13 12 11 and Diversity Manager, is advisorsquare, follow the ladder upwards and place your pawn to the If you land on a green ? integrating on the square where the ladder ends. A person will be waiting there holding eitherinclusion and diversity into ?all aspects of Brgs, stars dollar sign in a year pull a 3 6 7 8 9 10 1 card from Contents which were formedor aabout their hand.anMake sure tofor yourLimitless Growthbe shy--business. 4 5 the deck. It will provide you with explanation reward. Don’t PDJ grainger’s cards must their to the group! ago, guiding them as theyall select be read aloudown sideCollect your reward(s) and place the Winning the game * Gameboard card back in the deck--on the bottom, text up. * Pawns for navigating board * Spinner with plastic arrow and develop programs relevant to leaders If you happen to land on an orange square, you must draw a card from the * Deck of “Limitless Growth” cards The game can be won using one of two ways: “Stagnant Growth” deck. No frowning! Move your pawn down the pitfall to the * Deck of “Stagnant Growth” cards square and next to the person standing their arms thrown up their own interests and needs. place itthe penalty and place the cardthere withthe deck (see above). 1. Be the first person to collect the most points for Talent Stars * Deck of “I & D Factoids” cards in confusion. Pay back in * Diversity Dollars and Diversity Dollars when the game time expires. * Talent Stars “Employee development White squares arecom-you land on either, please draw a card from is a neutral. If Blue and * Pair of dice Points are tallied in the following manner: the & D Factoid” deck which factoids ponent for each Brg, so “IIall partner beoffers generalthe bottomabout Inclusion andupDiversity. Again, used cards should with to returned of the deck, face and 100 points per $1,000 held
To collect the most Talent Stars and Diversity Dollars or be the first player to reach the #100 “Winner” bonus square. For 2 to 4 players Suits and Corporate Ladders is a game designed to share the business advantages of an inclusive workforce. Players are shown the potential rewards for implementing the best practices of inclusion and diversity as they climb up the ladders of Limitless Growth. The pitfalls of Stagnant Growth serve as consequences for unwise decisions.
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Position the gameboard so that all the players can easily move their pawns from square to square. Everyone chooses a pawn to play. Any extra pawns are out of play. Chosen pawns ? start off outside of the board area near square #1. Get ready for fun!
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1. Roll the dice to decide which player goes first. The player with the highest number goes first. Feel free to use the spinner wheel as an alternative method. 2. Each player should take turns spinning the wheel to determine the number of spaces to move forward. Follow the numbering on the board and be mindful of the board’s zigzag path! 3. Remember, your pawn must land on a green or orange square in order to climb up the ladder or fall down the board.

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Although this game is based on “the luck of the spin”, players should not be discouraged! The main goal of the game is to ensure a wide range of outcomes that will help to build awareness of the objective, strategies, and values of inclusion and diversity.

Take a brief moment to look over the gameboard. The squares are numbered from 1 to 100. Players’ pawns will move back and forth across the board in an upward and zig-zag fashion. The squares are color coded to indicate which action should be taken. Please note the following:

* Gameboard * Pawns for navigating board * Spinner with plastic arrow * Deck of “Limitless Growth” cards * Deck of “Stagnant Growth” cards * Deck of “I & D Factoids” cards * Diversity Dollars * Talent Stars * Pair of dice

If you land on a green square, follow the ladder upwards and place your pawn on the square where the ladder ends. A person will be waiting there holding either stars or a dollar sign in their hand. Make sure to pull a Limitless Growth card from the deck. It will provide you with an explanation for your reward. Don’t be shy-all cards must be read aloud to the group! Collect your reward(s) and place the card back in the deck--on the bottom, text side up. If you happen to land on an orange square, you must draw a card from the ? “Stagnant Growth” deck. No frowning! Move your pawn down the pitfall to the square and place it next to the person standing there with their arms thrown up ? in confusion. Pay the penalty and place the card back in the deck (see above).

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The game can be won using one of two ways:

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1. Be the first person to collect the most points for Talent Stars and Diversity Dollars when the game time expires. Points are tallied in the following manner: 100 points per $1,000 held 200 points per Talent Star OR

Blue and White squares are neutral. If you land on either, please draw a card from the “I & D Factoid” deck which offers general factoids about Inclusion and Diversity. Again, ? used cards should be returned to the bottom of the deck, face up and all reshuffled for re-use as necessary.
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Diversity is everyone's business!
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2. Be the first player to reach or surpass the #100 “Winner” bonus square.

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© 2008 designed by Kim Love www.groupmemory.com

reshuffled for re-use as necessary.

200 points per Talent Star OR

Diversity is everyone's business!
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Pro f i les i n D i ve rsit y Journal January/February 2010

2. Be the first player to reach or surpass the #100 “Winner” bonus square. Gameboard designed for Grainger by Kim

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