Defining the equal organization

To know what equality means in your organization, you can start by drawing a picture on what an equal organization would look like. This picture can be seen as tool that will help you creating visions and define what equality could mean in your particular context. Without visions and goals there is a challenge to measure how close or far away we are from what we what to achieve in equality.

Let make it hands-on:

·       Sit down in groups of 3-6 people

·       Try to identify what your work place would look like if it was 100% equal. How would it be to be employed, to be a customer/client/service user, what your product/services would look like, etc.? Let each group discuss one perspective. If there are more groups than viewpoints, let more groups discuss the same.

Advice: Try to get as detailed as possible, into the everyday working processes. At this point you should also not care about what it looks like today, though you should keep your main targets and tasks in focus.

·       Go through what all groups have discussed and wrap it up on a board that is visible for all. Allow the participants to make suggestions and to oppose or add things to each others ideas. When you have a common picture of your equal organization, go to next step.

·       Start comparing your picture of the equal organization to what your organization look like today.

o   What does it look like today and why?

o   Identify coherences and discrepancies between the reality and the vision?

o   List all discrepancies you can find.

If you find yourself discussing things you didn’t think about in the first step, go back and add this to your vision.

Advice: When you start discussing your findings, put an extra focus on the following:

o   Who are the potentially discriminated groups? Gender? Race/ethnicity/religion/language? Functionality? The more specific you are, the easier to find the right target groups for your future actions.

o   Why does it look like this? Both the societal situation with norms and ideas, structural living conditions for different groups, and your internal working processes and attitudes are relevant.

·       From the list of discrepancies, it will be possible to see where the weaknesses of the organization are.  

This will be a very good starting point for your Equality Journey!

Christina Ahlzén, Medida