What exactly are the FIVE SKILLS OF TOLERANCE every organization needs to build a “Safe” environment, which is TRUST?
Skills. The entire business world is based on developing their employees’ skills, not on being politically correct. This is also true when it comes to D&I programs, which have gained the reputation of being nice programs to do, but not really helping the organization reach its strategic goals and making money. This is why the Society for Human Resource Management (SHRM) said that when the economy takes a downturn, D&I programs are among the first to go. Why? Because the D&I program was never tied to how it could help the organization reach its strategic goals. It is a “nice” thing to do when times are good, but when times are bad, we dump them.
So, across the last couple decades, I pared down the skills that every organization needs to adopt for humans to effectively deal with one another. These skills are not just designed to help Blacks, Whites, men, women and so on, but they focus on what we all have in common: We ARE human. These Five Skills of Tolerance are:
- Emotional Intelligence Is REQUIRED!
- Overcome Your Subconscious Brain & Resolve Conflict (EPR)
- Identify & Stop Bullying
- Understanding Real Differences vs. Stereotypes
- Don’t Be An ENABLER!
The ultimate goal of these skills is to create a culture where it is safe. That is the definition of “trust.”
- Is the environment safe from germs in the middle of a pandemic?
- Will I go home with all my fingers and toes?
- Is it safe to be different, like being Black, female, gay and so on?
- Is it safe to disagree with other people?
- Is it safe to disagree with my boss?
That is the litmus test for any environment: Is it safe? If not, then the organization will likely be toxic and countless issues will arise, such as employment lawsuits and civil rights charges, workplace violence and low morale.
The first skill is the single most important skill any human can acquire: Emotional Intelligence. EI teaches everyone in your organization how they can better control their egos and emotions, which means they are better able to act like “big people.” EI accounts for 80% to 90% of our success and happiness, and far too many people just don’t know what it is, much less work to build it.
Insisting that your employees be tolerant of others means they are not allowed to persecute others, or bully them, just because they disagree with them or because they are different. Tolerance does not tell others how to think. It tells people that you will have diversity in your workplace, and in the world, and that it is OK to disagree with one another. Unfortunately, that is a dying skill in this country right now. Emotional intelligence and tolerance go hand in hand. Emotional intelligence teaches people to keep their egos and emotions under better control so they can resolve differences like mature individuals. Only by becoming more emotionally intelligent can we become more tolerant of others and their ideas, which I refer to as the Diversity of Ideas. Emotionally intelligent people are more tolerant of others, which means they do not bully someone when they disagree.
If someone can build their EI, they can then focus on overcoming their subconscious biases and resolve their conflicts. We are all human, which means we all have implicit biases towards others. These implicit, or subconscious, biases will sabotage our EI skills and our level of tolerance if we do not discover them and overcome them. This skill is also where my EPR skills to address and resolve conflicts. EOR, which stands for Empathic Listening, Parroting and “Rewards,” is the process we all need to use every time we find ourselves in a highly emotional conflict, whether it is a conflict over someone’s race, gender identity, the wearing of masks or vaccinations.
We then want to make sure your people can spot bullying when it happens, and then stop it. That is the third skill. The fourth skill teaches them how to distinguish between the real differences that exist between us and all of the stereotypes and myths they have always heard about other people. And finally, the fifth skill requires everyone in the workplace to take responsibility for speaking up and stop enabling others who break these rules.
These are the Five Skills of Tolerance every workplace, and the world, needs.
About Scott Warrick JD, MLHR, CEQC, SCP
Scott Warrick (www.scottwarrick.com) is a practicing Employment Law Attorney, Human Resource Professional and best-selling author with 40 years of hands-on experience. Scott uses his unique background to help organizations get where they want to go, which includes coaching and training managers and employees on site in his own unique, practical and entertaining style.
Scott is also a best-selling author. His first book, Solve Employee Problems Before They Start: Resolving Conflict in the Real World, is a #1 Best Seller for Business and Conflict Resolution. It was also named by EGLOBALIS as one of the best global Customer and Employee books for 2020-2021. Scott’s most recent book, Living The Five Skills of Tolerance, is also a #1 Best Seller in 13 categories on Amazon, including Business Management, Education, Education and Teaching, Educational, Human Resource Management, Leadership, Minority Studies, Organizational Change, Race Relations, Religious Intolerance, Religious Studies, Teacher Resources, Training and Workplace Culture. Scott travels the country presenting seminars on such topics as Employment Law, Resolving Conflict, Diversity, and General Differences.
You can learn more about having Scott present his programs to your organization and his books by visiting www.scottwarrick.com.