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ATD Blog

3 Ways to Make Training More Inclusive

Thursday, August 25, 2022

It’s becoming increasingly important to create a wholly inclusive culture within the workplace. When it comes to staff training, it’s crucial the program caters to the needs of every individual employee to ensure the team can learn and develop together. If you don’t put the right steps in place, some team members may feel alienated or fall behind others, which can have a detrimental effect on the wider company culture.

As reported in this guide to disability inclusion in the workplace, in the UK, 19 percent of working-age adults are disabled. Failing to make reasonable adjustments to help this demographic feel comfortable at work will mean you’re shutting your company off to a huge talent pool. This is why every aspect of your company, including any training, should have inclusivity at the forefront.

Here are three ways to modify your programs to better accommodate all learners.

Use Different Types of Content

Presenting information in different ways is an essential part of any inclusive training program. Everyone has their own learning preferences, but for some people with disabilities, certain formats can make the learning process even more difficult. For instance, while some learners have no accessibility issues with reading and digesting large blocks of text, others will find it easier to engage with video or audio tutorials. As such, be sure to vary the ways you deliver the content to give everyone the opportunity to learn in a way that suits their needs.


Allow People to Learn in Their Own Time

Whether they’re conducted remotely or in person, having live training sessions where people come together can be a great way to promote collaborative learning. However, this won’t necessarily produce the best conditions for everyone to learn effectively. Learners with various neurodivergent needs may benefit from being able to access the notes or the lecture after the session.

People with learning disabilities, such as auditory processing disorder, language processing disorder, or dyslexia, can find it particularly difficult to process heavy amounts of information all at once. Therefore, it’s important that they have the option to go over anything again in their own time.


Ask for Input and Implement Feedback

As a trainer or instructional designer, you can’t be expected to know how each individual employee will best respond to different methods of instruction. So, when developing a training plan, it’s important to ask people with different learning profiles for their input to help you gauge what will work best and ensure everyone’s voice is being heard.

This shouldn’t be a one-off conversation. Throughout the training program, be sure to frequently check in with employees to gather their feedback on the sessions. This information will help you tailor sessions to better suit the team’s needs, ensuring everyone can benefit from the learning process.

There are many benefits of effective staff training, and it’s a crucial part of any successful business. Though it may take a little extra effort, taking a collaborative and inclusive approach to any in-house training will not only help to support the development of your employees, but you will also feel the wider benefits across the company.

About the Author

Dylan Reid is a freelance writer who holds a particular interest in employee welfare and have created content for established companies based all around the world.