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3 Key Learnings from a Year of DEI Education

As we reflect on the year at IBIS, we feel energized by the number of people impacted through Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion (DEI) education.

Our services reached 32,000 learners in 2021.

Whether experiencing Interactive Theater, e-learning, or more than 300 facilitated workshops and trainings, more than 28,000 people went through IBIS training on DEI this year.

We also reached 4,000 learners through assessments, including three re-assessments with benchmarking against prior years to measure progress (and progress was made!).

Our DEI organizational assessments help organizations establish a baseline and receive targeted recommendations that can serve as the framework for a strategic plan.

Being able to support the long-range growth of organizations over multiple years and initiatives is tremendously rewarding and exciting for us, as we are able to observe and confirm that interventions and initiatives truly work to change DEI, culture, and companies.

DEI is a journey, but with the right changes, it is a journey with meaningful results.

Our own team expanded, too. We made connections and strategic partnerships with dozens of international DEI experts and facilitators this year, adding many to our team on an ongoing basis. Our work reaches global audiences and we continue to grow and scale our impact as our clients include multiple organizations across different continents.

Our own internal team doubled in size as we added new roles and greater definition to our internal processes to ensure that we will continue to successfully scale and support the wide range of multinational clients bringing DEI around the globe.

This year has left us with 3 key learnings about DEI education. It must be:


  • Recognize that DEI is a learning journey that requires time to build understanding


  • Focus on addressing systemic disparities, not just individual behavior


  • Use different modalities and tools to deliver training and education in an ongoing way that supports the learning journey over time

We also expanded our content offerings significantly. While clients developed more interest in topics like Inclusive Leadership and HR as a Strategic Diversity Partner, it was in Racial Equity that the passion to better understand the challenges and make lasting change was unprecedented in our 33-year history.

As a result, we created 4 new e-learning modules focusing on Racial Equity in 2021.

These e-learnings explore how racial inequities and racism show up today, both at work and in our communities, and what can be done to advance racial equity and belonging. Following the training, participants have an increased ability to advance racial equity and promote a sense of belonging and identify biases in daily interactions at work.

The e-learning series starts with the fundamentals of racial equity and builds on them to guide the learner to greater awareness about systemic racism and power and privilege, ending with a final module on taking action as an ally helping build an anti-racist culture.

Module 1: Fundamentals to Racial Equity

  • What is Racial Equity, and Why is it Important?
  • Equity vs. Equality
  • Real-Life Stories of the Impact of Racism in the Workplace
  • Social Identity Wheel (in- vs. out- groups)
  • “Culture Add” vs. “Culture Fit”
  • Race & Racism

Module 2: Systemic Racism

  • Four Types of Racism in the Workplace
  • U.S. Historical Context on Race (optional)
  • Concepts of Power, Prejudice, and Oppression
  • Antiblackness & Colorism
  • Interrupting the Cycle of Oppression and Prejudice

Module 3: Power & Privilege

  • Privilege and Racial Consciousness
  • Having Difficult Conversations on Race (Scenario)
  • Framework/guidelines for Race-Related Dialogue
  • Do’s and Don’ts for Race-Related Dialogue

Module 4: Allyship and Anti-Racism

  • What is Allyship?
  • Allyship at Work (Scenario)
  • Seven Forms of Allyship
  • Spheres of Influence
  • Common Pitfalls to Avoid
  • Action Planning & Strategies to be Anti-racist

As we look ahead to 2022, we are ready and eager to help you and your organization change, grow and create space for diversity, equity and inclusion for all employees.

Contact us today to learn more.

CEO Shilpa Pherwani collaborates with leaders to develop innovative, engaging solutions to dismantle systemic inequities and leverage diversity for success. An organizational psychologist by training, she builds trusting, long-term relationships through deep listening and meeting people where they are.