Mon, 23 September 2019
How to Teach Empathy and Instill the Importance of Diversity and Inclusion: Insights from Ingersoll Rand's Chief Diversity Officer
Michelle Murphy is the Chief Diversity Officer and VP of Global Talent Acquisition at Ingersoll Rand, a manufacturing and sustainability company that creates products and services for commercial, industrial and residential customers. Some of their products include heating and air conditioning systems, golf carts, and power tools. They were formed in 1905 and today they have 40,000 employees around the world.
Michelle recently wrote an article, titled Truly Effective Diversity Training Can Be Measured in Goosebumps where she opened up about the moment when she realized the importance of diversity and inclusion inside and outside of the workplace. Her experience ignited a passion for creating a safe place to work inside of Ingersoll Rand as well as encouraging others to do the same in organizations around the world.
With the current world of work, where we are all so connected and where we can interact with customers and coworkers from countries all around the world the issue of diversity and inclusion is more important now than ever before. It is crucial for all of us to have empathy and compassion and to be able to see the world through the eyes of others.
Ingersoll Rand has some great programs in place to foster and develop a culture of diversity and inclusion. They include:
The question is, is it possible to teach someone to be empathetic or to focus on diversity and inclusion? Michelle says, “When I think about how do you teach someone, I feel like what we do is we try to create opportunities to offer experiences for people, because I'm not sure that there's a training you could go to, or that you could teach people what it's like to feel certain ways. So, creating experiences where people get to watch others describe their feelings, and share in that, tend to take us a little bit further than I'll call maybe a typical training class. Because what you realize in that setting is, "These are the people I see and work with every day, and I know them pretty well, and I think they're smart people and good people, and I like them, and wow, I had no idea that that's what they were dealing with." Sometimes that acknowledgment is part of what helps create the opportunity for learning, for maybe that person who doesn't demonstrate empathy easily or well. Sometimes creating those experiences where they have those opportunities is the best way to do it.”