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Relativity partners with Electives to create customized learning program

A topic like family can be difficult to discuss in the workplace. But, when Relativity asked employees what topics they wanted to learn, modern family dynamics – including adoption, interracial dynamics, LGBTQ/same-sex adoption – topped the list.

A gay male couple with their daughter are baking together.A gay male couple with their daughter are baking together.

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Insights from Ellen Raim, Founder of People MatterWe focus more on solving than preventing People problems.

A topic like family can be difficult to discuss in the workplace. But, when Relativity asked employees what topics they wanted to learn, modern family dynamics – including adoption, interracial dynamics and LGBTQ/same-sex adoption – topped the list.

The opportunity:

After realizing employees want to talk about the evolution of the modern family and what family dynamics look like today, Ana Ramirez, Senior Specialist: Inclusion, Diversity and Belonging at Relativity, reached out to the Electives team to collaborate on developing a customized learning program.

The solution:

Relativity wanted its class on modern family dynamics to be fun and educational.

The Relativity team was familiar with Electives, and Ana knew Monica D. Livingston, a popular Electives instructor, would be perfect to bring back to her team for the class on modern family dynamics. Monica previously delivered a class on the topic of implicit bias to the Relativity team, and survey data proved that the content resonated. Ana was confident Monica would curate a space for a discussion on modern family dynamics that would be educational and fun, even as they addressed recent news and opinions surrounding Roe v. Wade rulings.

The results:

The modern family dynamics class created team bonding opportunities at Relativity.

Team bonding happens when employees learn from one another. Those moments of connectivity leave a lasting impact. During the modern family class, Monica created a space, coined a “family meeting,” and encouraged Relativity employees to share their family stories.

Relativity employees appreciated hearing personal stories from colleagues and found themselves celebrating interracial families, families with adopted children, childless families, large and small families and more. Any type of family, they affirmed together, is a family. This point was highlighted throughout the custom modern family Electives class delivered to Relativity.

Relativity teammates shared insights on how people can be more understanding or supportive of modern family dynamics. Themes included:

  • Not making assumptions about an individual’s reproductive abilities.
  • Recognizing that adoption is a positive life event.
  • Being vulnerable with colleagues.
  • Identifying both similarities and differences across teammates.

“I love it when people give maximum effort to the practice of having a growth mindset,” commented Monica after leading the 90-minute class. “We looked at how the family has changed over decades, but also how it hasn’t. The fundamental takeaway is that, regardless of the members of your family, the true unifier is acceptance and being valued.”

Relativity created a safe space for its people.

“People want connection.. to be seen.. heard and valued,” continued Monica. “The Relativity community was a true example of how, when employees are able to be their full selves in the workplace, in a safe environment, people will share and grow.”

“I honestly cannot thank you all enough for organizing this,” proclaimed a Relativity employee in the post-class survey. “Countless times, through my working history, my ‘family’ was overlooked or my time off requests or scheduling was second to my coworkers with kids because I didn’t have children. The education and celebration of families of any kind is such a breath of fresh air to me.”

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