How to Make Your Unconscious Bias Training More Effective

Unconscious biases are deeply ingrained attitudes and beliefs that influence our behavior without our awareness. They can be a result of our upbringing, culture, and personal experiences. Recognizing and addressing these biases in the workplace is essential for fostering an inclusive environment and making unbiased decisions. While many companies invest in unconscious bias training, the effectiveness can vary significantly. Here’s how you can make your unconscious bias workplace training more impactful:

1. Start with Self-awareness:

Before participants can address their biases, they need to recognize them. Employ tools like the Implicit Association Test (IAT) to help attendees become aware of their own biases. Realizing that they have biases is the first step to managing them.

2. Use Real-life Scenarios:

Abstract concepts can be difficult to grasp. Incorporate real-life examples that are relevant to your industry or company. This approach will help participants see the tangible effects of unconscious biases in day-to-day situations.

3. Engage in Interactive Sessions:

Instead of a one-way lecture, opt for interactive sessions. Group discussions, role-playing, and case studies can stimulate deeper understanding and introspection among attendees.

4. Incorporate Diverse Voices:

Diversity in trainers and speakers can provide different perspectives. It’s essential for participants to hear from people of varying backgrounds, genders, ethnicities, and experiences to understand the multi-dimensional aspects of biases.

5. Continuous Learning:

Unconscious bias training should not be a one-time event. Offer refresher courses, follow-up sessions, and resources for continuous learning. This will ensure that the lessons learned during training are reinforced over time.

6. Measure Impact:

Track metrics such as employee satisfaction, diversity in hiring, and leadership roles to gauge the effectiveness of the training. This not only shows ROI but also identifies areas for improvement.

7. Create a Safe Environment:

For training to be effective, participants need to feel safe expressing their thoughts without fear of judgment. Foster a non-judgmental environment where everyone feels valued and heard.

8. Challenge Assumptions:

Encourage participants to question their beliefs and assumptions. Provide them with tools and techniques to challenge their own biases when they arise.

9. Address Systemic Biases:

While individual awareness is essential, addressing systemic biases within the organization is equally important. Look at policies, procedures, and norms to identify and rectify any embedded biases.

10. Implement Action Plans:

At the end of the training, ask participants to come up with personal action plans. This can include strategies they’ll employ to manage their biases, changes they’ll make in their work, or ways they’ll promote inclusivity in their teams.

11. Integrate with Other Training:

Ensure unconscious bias training doesn’t exist in isolation. Integrate its principles into other training modules like leadership training, team building, and communication workshops.

12. Lead from the Top:

Leaders play a crucial role in setting the tone for an organization. When top management is involved in and supports unconscious bias training, it sends a strong message about the company’s commitment to inclusivity.


Unconscious bias training provided by American Diversity Initiative is more than just ticking a box for diversity and inclusion initiatives. When done right, it can lead to profound changes in an organization’s culture, decision-making processes, and overall inclusivity. Implementing these strategies, you can ensure that your training goes beyond mere awareness and brings about genuine transformation in attitudes and behaviors.