for his role in world renown band Yothu Yindi, but for his work contributing to Australian Aboriginal education and pride.
As Australians this is yet another sign of our evolving cultural maturity- recognition of our first peoples as well as our cultural diversity. Also significant this week, at the beginning of the new financial year, is the start of DisabilityCare Australia (was NDIS).
I believe, even with these positive and inclusive indicators, we still have an extremely long way to go to be inclusive within our communications.
An ethical axiom often quoted is ‘Do unto others as you would do for yourself’. Yet how often are we oblivious to the basics? If we are to be inclusive communicators, do we treat ourselves and our organisations the same as we would those we are trying to communicate with?
Are we inclusive communicators within our workplaces? Whilst we are not responsible for employment policy, we are responsible for internal communications. Do all within our organisation have equal access to information- especially in terms of physical access and or cultural understanding and context? What about our clients? Are we able to advocate for communications inclusion in their workplaces?
If an organisation expresses itself internally with inclusion, then it is better equipped to deal with clients and potential customers. Based on this building block we can then start to look outward to broader Inclusive Communications actions.
So how to kick start this aspect of Inclusive Communications for both ourselves, clients and workplaces? A key tool in this regard is training.
A starting point for inclusion is through Awareness Training. However, training for Inclusive Communications needs to go further with -
* Strategy for Inclusive Communications- how incorporate this into existing communications, marketing and customer service programs.
* Tools- Understanding the types of communications practices and resources needed for communications with diverse audiences.
* Hands on skills such as writing and producing content in different formats, plain and or Easy English. Also understanding and guidelines for communicating in different situations.
Of course such training also needs to be relevant to participants, be they management, those delivering services, general staff, customer relations or people with marketing and communications responsibilities.
Getting into the ‘shoes of other people’ is a useful and critical starting point for Inclusive Communications.
PS: You can view ComAbility's Training Options