In This Blog: there are many benefits to disability awareness training. Within this blog, we have listed just 7 of these and the ways to harness these benefits within your organisation
Disability awareness and inclusion training can often take a backseat to other seemingly more pressing priorities within the workplace. However, what many fail to realise is that disability awareness training can offer valuable insight into how to develop your disability inclusive strategy. When you prioritise disabled people within your business strategy, you are creating an environment that is inclusive and accessible for all your employees.
Disability awareness training will support you to ensure that you are being inclusive of disabled people in every area of business.
Whether it be recruiting for a new position in your team or welcoming disabled people to an event. The benefits of disability awareness training can be witnessed in many ways; building and developing confidence within existing employees in a team, gaining skills, knowledge and know-how and clarifying the next step. As we are talking specifically about disability awareness training benefits, there is nothing more beneficial than having your training delivered by people with lived experience. Obviously, I’m a bit biased. But it’s true! No matter what the subject, somebody with personal knowledge of that subject matter backed with professional experience is always best placed to support others to learn.
Interactions with disabled people
As we know, 1 in 5 people have a disability. Disability touches many people in many different ways; directly and indirectly. However, there may be a number of people within your business who may not have much, if any experience of disability. Many people live alongside disability, either because they are disabled themselves, there is a disabled person in their family or a neighbour or friend is disabled. (Don’t forget, disability is diverse. Just because you can’t see it, doesn’t mean it’s not there) However, there are many more that have not experienced disability. This could simply be because their friend or family member has not disclosed that they have an impairment, or that person does not identify as being disabled. Read our blog on why disabled people may not be disclosing their disability.
If a person has never experienced disability, it will be challenging for them to have a successful interaction. When it comes to your business, it’s imperative that every interaction with a customer or an employee is a successful one. This is because successful interactions lead to happy people. Happy people regularly frequent your business and talk about your business opportunities with others.
The risks of not investing in disability awareness training
Without an awareness of the barriers that disabled people face and the potential assets that disabled people are, there are many risks:
- Lost customers – if a disabled customer doesn’t feel welcome, they will go elsewhere
- Shallow candidate pool – there are many methods a business can implement to attract disabled candidates
- Stagnant creativity and innovation
- Lack of empathy – if you are not aware, you can’t empathise
- Lack of confidence
- Misrepresentation – a person who is not aware of how to be inclusive can misrepresent their intentions
Disability awareness training can support the mitigation of all of these. Celebrating Disability’s training style is designed in such a way to create an open, transparent environment where delegates feel that strategies suggested are tangible. Time is spent helping delegates to understand why the risks discussed above as long with many others exist and ways to mitigate them. To read more about how our training style supports delegates to take action, read this blog.
7 Disability Awareness Training Benefits That Will Support Your Business
Whilst particular content will be unique to the subject matter that we will be discussing in your disability awareness training session, the benefits below are universal for any group.
By being aware of the diversity of disability and the barriers that disabled employees and customers face, you will be able to find ways to mitigate these. Even whilst every disabled person has unique requirements, you will be able to draw on your experience of implementing accessible and inclusive processes so that every time you do so, it gets easier.
When we understand something, we are more confident. And that’s how you want your employees to feel. They can then project that confidence throughout your workplace and they will be more confident to take risks and implement something new.
By being more confident about the language we should use when talking to disabled people, it will be easier to engage and interact. In a customer facing service role, this will support your disabled customers to feel welcome. In a workplace environment, when you can confidently engage with your disabled employees enabling them to feel part of the team, they can be more productive, engaged, creative…
There are many barriers that disabled people face on a daily basis, if we are aware of these barriers, we can start to think of solutions:
- To recruitment
- To building access
- To transport
- To public service
- To communication
- To attitudes
Disability awareness training helps foster value. Knowledge is valuable. Having knowledge of barriers, ways to mitigate and ways to include everyone, your business will be able to eradicate the risks we discussed above.
By understanding the barriers, every time you design a new service, building, product, etc, you will have the information you need to ensure that it is accessible and inclusive for disabled people. You also have the confidence to engage and enlist the support of disabled consultants and lived experience experts to help you design your services and products to be accessible and inclusive.
Every business wants to develop that inclusive workplace culture. However, how many businesses consider disability inclusion as a priority? Disability awareness training in which ever area of business is relevant, encourages that conversation to design and develop a culture of inclusion for everyone.
Is disability awareness training something that would be useful for your business? We have more information about how our training sessions can work for your business needs. Alternatively, get in touch to start planning your disability awareness training session.
Esi (rhymes with messy) set up Celebrating Disability in 2017; offering training, consulting and auditing to support businesses attract, engage and retain disabled people. Having the opportunity to support businesses to see the wealth of benefits that disabled people can bring to business, either as customers or employees is a privilege. She is passionate about disability equality and inclusion and loves nothing more than that “Ah ha” moment with a client when they see what disability equality and inclusion can do for them.