At Head2Head Sensory Theatre we champion inclusion in all types of working environments, including performing arts and theatre. Inclusion gets to the heart of employees’ sense of belonging in the workplace; the feeling that they are being seen, heard and valued as individuals.
What are the real benefits of promoting a diverse and inclusive workplace?
Ciara Lawrence, our disabilities advocate and valued trustee of Head2Head, talks about why ‘now’ is the time to act during National Inclusion Week 2022.
Ciara is Mencap’s Big Plan Engagement Lead where she works to give people with learning disabilities a voice in the workplace. She believes inclusion needs to be addressed at the start of a piece of work.
Employees themselves are your guide for measuring inclusion. A good way to introduce an inclusive culture should be by first actively listening to your employees. Find out more about their experiences, what is important to them, what they enjoy doing and don’t, what their challenges are and how they can be best supported.
Inclusion is all about including people at the beginning of a project rather than showing them the final result, this helps them to be involved and creates work that is more accessible and easy to understand and relate to.
Employees that feel valued and accepted are more engaged
It may seem obvious but putting in more effort to understand your employees and making them feel valued will give you back more.
Diverse workforces are higher performing and more innovative because they bring diverse talent, skills, experiences, and perspectives to the work.
Talk about it
At the very heart of inclusion is the idea of removing barriers. The pandemic has helped give us more of an insight into the real personal lives of the people we work with and see them for who they really are and what they stand for.
The Power of now is all about helping our colleagues feel safe to be themselves around us all the time. Topics such as neurodiversity, menopause, gender identity, fertility and mobility should be addressed and spoken about responsibly.
Inclusion is essential for your company’s long-term success.
Inclusion in theatre: Work Experience Programme
Head2Head offers opportunities for young people with special needs to gain experience in life and social skills working on live and virtual productions as stage managers, voice over artists and performers. The volunteers are guided and mentored by members of our professional acting team and, at the end of their experience, they receive a Head2Head t-shirt and a written report that may be included in a job application folder. Many go on to achieve work in theatre environments.
National Inclusion Week
Read more about diversity and inclusion
Read more tips from People Management
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