The Walt Disney Company

Tailored unconscious bias training to empower the Disney security team

The Walt Disney Company (Disney) is one of the largest and best-known entertainment and media companies in history with numerous sites located around the world. Disney approached EW Group in 2021 to help them drive awareness across the organisation of diversity and inclusion best practice, and to work closely with their security team to deliver tailored training to support their specific needs.

Working together to build an inclusive culture and leadership

EW Group has been delivering an interactive ‘Everyday Inclusion and Leading Inclusively’ course for Disney since January 2021. Covering the concepts of DEI and the various ways inclusion and exclusion can impact us and our behaviour, the course explores language use, microaggressions, antiracism and more, delegates learnt ways to practice inclusion and antiracism every day in the workplace.

So far, Diversity and Inclusion specialists Caroline Arnold, Winston Ben Clements, Tash Thomas, Tiwonge Cohn and Samantha Hernandez, have delivered over 200 sessions to thousands of Disney employees across the world.

Bespoke diversity and inclusion training tailored to the specific needs of Disney’s security team

Disney wanted to further enhance customer and staff inclusivity by investing in the security team’s skills in managing customer interactions. The aim was to equip the security team, run by professional security services provider Wilson James, with tools and techniques to effectively carry out their duties with sensitivity, and an awareness of how unconscious bias can affect their interactions with the public.

“It’s so important all employees have a level of unconscious bias training. It made sense for our security officers and supervisors to have consistency and the same training which has been delivered to Disney employees across EMEA. Security officers and supervisors face unique challenges every day, most unseen to the business and public, therefore the training has been enhanced with a security scenario spin to ensure that our team not only understand unconscious bias, but can remain confident, supported and empowered in delivering non bias security procedures and controls. And, where situations may become more challenging, the team are extremely well positioned to calmly and politely escalate to a supervisor, ensuring a customer service approach throughout, whilst most importantly not diluting security controls.”

Scott Paterson, Director of Security for EMEA, The Walt Disney Company

Working closely with the Disney team, Caroline Arnold developed a tailored version of the ‘Everyday Inclusion and Leading Inclusively’, to address the specific needs of the security team. One of the first of its kind, the course addressed the unique challenges faced by the security team with real-world scenarios to help develop the team’s confidence and ability to create a safe and secure environment in a customer friendly manner.

Specifically designed for the security team’s three areas of focus (theatres, premieres, and offices), the training provided an introduction to DEI and unconscious bias, and covered models such as speak up and PAUSE.

The course focused on building the teams’ confidence to sensitively challenge colleagues and customers where appropriate and quickly recognise situations which need to be escalated. The programme was delivered to two of the security teams in June 2022, with subsequent sessions rolled out in the August 2022.

“It has been an absolute pleasure leading the Disney delivery team for the Everyday Inclusion and Leading Inclusively course and sessions for the security team. At the end of each session, we ask what everyone is committing to, and it has been so fantastic to read all the activities the team have been inspired to take.”

Martin Adams, Security Account Manager

The feedback received was outstanding and the course resulted in an increase from 68% to 100% of delegates having a clear understanding of ways to behave inclusively. The course is now part of the team’s annual training programme.

“Excellent session delivered in a great interactive manner.”

Training Delegate

Working together to continue to drive meaningful change

The security team and wider Disney team continue to focus on driving forward diversity, equity and inclusion across the organisation and to build on the initiatives already implemented.

EW Group is excited to continue our partnership with The Walt Disney Company and continue to deliver high-impact diversity and inclusion training programmes and support Disney’s ongoing commitment to creating an inclusive culture.

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