Diversity Games in The Workplace: How To Promote Inclusion

Diversity in the workplace is now a staple for many organizations. Many business leaders or HR managers are talking about it. Here’s why. Diverse and inclusive companies are 35% more likely to outperform others. Diverse teams are 87% better at making decisions. With stats like this in mind, it’s obvious that promoting diversity in the workplace should be a priority.

Your business shouldn’t be an exception, and that’s why AllyBot explores how you can promote comaraderie via diversity games in the workplace. Learn more in this ultimate guide.

What Are Diversity Games?

Diversity games are an approach to promoting cooperation, inclusion, team spirit, a sense of community, and solidarity in the workplace. These gaming events should be easy, fun, and inexpensive to be effective. Similar to activities promoting diversity in the workplace, diversity games have the same aim, but with a real emphasis on fun. 

Diversity Games For the Workplace

HR leaders must be proactive in encouraging diversity and inclusion in the workplace. It helps your company build a positive culture that can reduce turnover and enhance job satisfaction. 

And if you want to get the ball rolling, consider diversity games for your staff. A little further in, you’ll get a list of the best gaming events from AllyBot to inject vibrancy and energy into your training programs.  

Why Diversity Games in The Workplace Is Important

Team-bonding games and activities have massive benefits for your company. They can strengthen relationships among your workers, build a sense of belonging, and encourage them to be open with each other in a relaxed environment.

Here are a few other advantages:  

Improves company Image

According to several studies, company culture influences job seekers’ decisions when applying for work. So, if you want to attract top talent from diverse backgrounds, you need to promote inclusivity in the workplace. 

Doubles work performance

Diversity games in the workplace encourage employees to value each other’s different skill sets. Instead of seeing each other as competitors, they learn to harness their range of abilities to achieve the same company goals. As a result, it can lead to increased work performance.

Enhances employee engagement

An inclusive and welcoming environment in your workplace can lead to high employee engagement. That’s because they can embrace and respect each other regardless of their racial, cultural, religious differences.

7 Best Diversity Games in the Workplace

Now let’s take a deep dive into practical diversity games to enable you to develop friendships, and respect for diversity within your organization. 

Each gaming event includes an example, a goal, an estimate of the amount of time it takes to play, number of participants needed, and a step-by-step guide to playing the activity. Let’s go.

#1. Diversity flower

Purpose: Use this fun and highly engaging gaming event as an icebreaker and a lighthearted way to teach inclusivity and promote team bonding.

Estimated Time: 30 mins

How to play the game: 

  • Divide your employees into groups of 6-10 members. Next, distribute a wide range of colorful markers and drawing papers to each group.
  • Ask each group to draw a big flower with petals equaling the number of group participants in each team.
  • Let your teams brainstorm and figure out what these petals may represent in terms of diversity. Then ask each player to write something peculiar about themselves in the petals.
  • After they’re through with the individual tasks, ask them to identify common themes and write them in the center of the flower.
  • Next, let teams share their flowers with other groups and highlight the differences and similarities they discovered. 

#2. I Am, But I Am Not

Purpose: It helps team members deal with misconceptions and let go of stereotypes.

Estimated Time: 30 mins

How to play the game:

  • Give each player a piece of paper and something to write with. 
  • Next, let each participant draw two columns, naming one “I Am” and the other “But I Am Not.”
  • Ask each person to write honest statements about themselves in the columns. For instance, an individual may say,” I’m black, but I’m not inferior.” Or “I’m a woman, but I’m not a bad driver.” 
  • Encourage participants to share their feedback to initiate conversations about diversity.
  • Note that some responses can be sensitive, so be sure to guide the discussions to ensure no one feels offended.

#3. Community Puzzle

Purpose: To teach participants to embrace diversity.

Estimated Time: 30 mins

How to play the game:

  • Distribute a blank puzzle piece to players.
  • Ask them to use patterns, pictures, shapes, designs, and colors to illustrate the puzzle.
  • Next, let them present and shed more light on their puzzle piece illustrations to other group members.
  • Create an instant “tapestry” showing players’ differences by putting the puzzle together.

#4. Face Value

Purpose: It’s a non-verbal game that focuses on how people treat each other’s diversity.

Estimated Time: 45 mins to 1 hour

How to play the game:

Before the game

Get a deck of cards. Before the activity, tell the players that you’ll give each of them a card, and no one must look at their own card. They’ll use non-verbal cues to treat each other based on the card’s value. 

For example, you may want to bow to a participant with a high-value card. Or If they have a low card value, you may snub them.

Next, give a card to each player and then ask them to put the card on their forehead after everyone has received theirs. 

During the game

Encourage the groups to mingle for between 3 and 5 minutes. Add more time for a large group.

Next, ask the participants to form groups according to what they think their card’s value is. High cards are on one side, low cards are on the other, and middle cards in the middle.

Afterwards, finish off with a round of questioning, like how they knew what their number was, and how the exercise relates to real life.

#5. Story links

Purpose: Use the art of storytelling to foster diversity and inclusion in real-life stories and individual experiences. 

Estimated Time: 30 mins

How to play the game:

  • Choose a team to start the story link. Ask the group leader to begin the story with a statement. 
  • Next, let another player in the team add more details to the story until everyone has contributed their version.

The game is all about using real-life experiences in order to explore different aspects of cultures including ancestry, artistry and cuisine. It can be a seriously fun way for team members to learn about the individual cultures of their team members in a fun and engaging way. 

For instance, your team leader could start with a statement like, ‘last year me and some friends travelled to Japan’. Another team member might add ‘did you try Japanese cuisine like takoyaki, udon and ramen’, with another following with ‘hopefully you checked out a kabuki show’ and so on.

#6. Defining Moments

Purpose: To help employees to learn unique things about each other

Estimated Time: 45 mins

How to play the game:

Provide team members with different colored paper and pens and encourage them to be honest and open.

  • Ask the participants to sit in a circle.
  • Next, ask the players to think about three extraordinary experiences in their life and jot down briefly about each moment on a different piece of paper.
  • Allow 10 mins or more for this exercise.
  • Now, let each participant share their defining moment according to how much of their story they want to discuss.
  • Congratulate every team member on taking part in the first exercise. Ask them what their takeaways from the stories are.
  • To enhance the diversity theme, ask each person to tape their moments in an accessible place to other colleagues. It’ll remind them about what impacted their workmates.

#7. Pirate Partage

Purpose: It’s a physical game that focuses on group communication to resolve handicaps.

Estimated Time: 30 mins

How to play the game:

Let four players sit around a table. Each participant experiences different handicaps as a pirate. One pirate is wearing a double-eye patch, so they’re blind. Another pirate can’t talk. Another is deaf due to excessive cannon blasts. And the final pirate uses a hook for a hand. 

Their challenge

They must share their treasure among themselves within a limited amount of time. Make the exercise more challenging by asking each pirate to get the other’s help to move the riches around. 

Pirate Partage enables organizations to initiate conversations about handicaps. You can identify these physical setbacks and map out practical ways to create flexible workspaces.

Welcoming diversity and inclusion is the way to go

Diversity games in the workplace are a game changer. They make it easy to teach your employees to collaborate, embrace each other, and appreciate each other’s differences and similarities. 
Want to dig deeper into how you can further build an inclusive workplace and a strong company culture? Try our inclusive language tool for Slack and sign up for a free trial of AllyBot now. We provide educational suggestions on non-inclusive language used in company chats, which can really help increase the diversity in online spaces! Add us to Slack today!