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Published 2024-03-13

Schibsted is training its employees in DIB

Schibsted is putting diversity, inclusion and belonging centre stage. A training is being rolled out across the whole company to make everyone aware of the impact Diversity, Inclusion and Belonging (DIB) has on the business and the organisation.

“I am very proud that this is happening. And I’m extra happy that we have set the training up with input from the organisation. This isn’t something we bought off the shelf, it’s adapted to Schibsted,” says Sumeet Singh Patpatia, Head of DIB.

Sumeet Singh Patpatia, Head of Diversity, Inclusion and Belonging at Schibsted. Photo: Alexander Eriksson

Sumeet has been working with DIB in Schibsted for 2,5 years and raising awareness and knowledge has been a clear goal. So, when an internal team was eager to learn more they worked together to set up the training, also involving other internal stakeholders. They created a concept built on Schibsted employees, Schibsted stories and addressing Schibsted’s business needs. 

“It has really meant a lot to do this together with the organisation. We have a concept that is relevant for Schibsted, with authentic stories,” says Andreas Bugge Grimsæth, learning and development specialist, who has been part of creating the training.

Now the beginning of what Sumeet calls a “DIB universe” is in place. 

“DIB is about acknowledging and embracing the unique strengths and perspectives that each individual brings to the table,” Sumeet explains.  

“And in the end, if we understand this better, Schibsted will not only be a more attractive workplace, but it will also improve our products and journalism – and we will reach more people.”

So far, the DIB universe consists of three different parts. A crash course – which is being rolled out to everyone. There is also a toolbox for teams and leaders who want to go to the next level and then there is the option to have longer workshops focusing on product development, which Sumeet and his colleagues set up on request.  A playbook is also on its way to support more inclusive recruitment processes.

An important and strong part of the crash course is the Schibsted “DIB class.” Seven employees from different parts of the organisation, with different perspectives share their insights in seven videos.

“The crash course is based on DIB theory, but these employees explain it, based on their own experiences,” Sumeet says. 

One of them is Isabella Olsén who shares her experience of being autistic. She first talked about her neurodiversity in a Schibsted All Hands meeting. 

“I think it’s important to show that people are different and we have different things with us that aren’t always visible.”

The goal now is that all employees take the crash course. And through that get a basic knowledge of DIB, how its different parts go together and become somewhat aware of how it plays out in society. Besides the DIB class videos, the 20-minute interactive digital course consists of fact boxes and tests. 

“I hope that everyone who takes the course will be a little less colour blind – and more aware of peoples’ differences and the potential that lies in that,” Sumeet says.  

One thing has stuck with him. When interviewing the seven members of the DIB class, they all independently pointed out the same message as important. They agreed to encourage people to ask questions. 

“But they all emphasised that the question should come from a place of curiosity and you should keep an open mind, whatever the answer is. So, we need to invest in our curiosity,” Sumeet says.