Difference: Why don’t we just talk about it?

Understanding and intervening with difference in the workplace

Thursday, 19 August 2021: 10am – 12pm

Content Focus Area: How has the workplace changed in unforeseen ways?

 

Presentation Abstract:

Differences amongst people have always been recognized and felt in groups but never has it been so stark and apparent than during the current COVID19 pandemic. Differences at work such as race, gender, class, religion often creates a deep discomfort or anxiety for all staff but there has been a significant increase since the start of the pandemic. This deep discomfort or anxiety arises when we find ourselves in groups where everyone is not the same. The idea of coming to terms with difference is thought of as having to give something up such as power. However, there is often a greater loss in not having difference or the richness that it brings. The risk of not grappling and engaging with difference could potentially result in a great poverty of mind and robs us of uniqueness and rich experiences within an organisation.

The presentation will firstly, explore the two main anxieties that difference evokes in groups and organisations which results in us not being able to engage authentically. Secondly, we will explore how current diversity training, transformation interventions and change management that address difference are not always effective and in fact can illicit shame. This is often because these kinds of interventions, albeit well-intentioned, often don’t take into account how deep the discomfort and anxiety of difference really is.

Finally, we will propose using a psychodynamic lens to understand difference and how to intervene within organisations, ensuring authentic conversations which result in lasting impact.

 

Learning Objectives:

  1. Understand the anxieties that differences within organisations evoke.
  2. Understand why some interventions are not effective.
  3. Deeper understanding and insight into differences within organisations.

Our seminars are limited to 200 people.

If you do not manage to get into the seminar,

please watch the seminar live on our Facebook page.

Kevashini Govender-Naidoo

Kevashini Govender-Naidoo

Clinical Psychologists, Specialist Organisational and Development Support @Impilo Consulting

Kevashini Govender-Naidoo is a University of Cape Town trained clinical psychologist and a specialist organisational development and support consultant. After approximately 20 years of clinical experience, Kevashini co-founded Impilo Consulting in 2017. She took an interest in systems-psychodynamic work with organisations as a psychology student, and developed an expertise through extensive and diverse experience in the public and private sectors. Her clinical experience also includes practice with individuals, groups and organisations in South Africa and the United Kingdom. She is especially interested in the impact of mental health in the workplace, student wellness within tertiary institutions and scholarship funds as well as issues of race, power and gender within organisations.

Speaking Experience:

  1. University of Cape Town: 2010 – 2020
    Case presentations
    30 multidisciplinary team professionals (Clinical Psychologists, psychiatrists, medical doctors, social workers, nurses)
  2. Mental Health Training 2019 – 20 participants
  3. EAPA-SA Conference 2019
    Who is the patient? Using a systems-psychodynamic approach to intervene with an organisation – 300 people
Ayesha Booley-Schreuder

Ayesha Booley-Schreuder

Clinical Psychologists, Specialist Organisational and Development Support @Impilo Consulting

Ayesha Booley-Schreuder is a Clinical Psychologist, registered with the Health Professions Council of South Africa (HPCSA). She completed her undergraduate studies in Psychology in 1995 as well as her Masters in Clinical Psychology in 2007, both at the University of Cape Town. Ayesha has diverse experience in the NGO and community sectors as a specialist organisational development and support consultant. She co-founded Impilo Consulting in 2017 and prior to this has had extensive clinical experience working with individuals of all ages, groups and organisations, both in private practice and within the context of the University of Cape Town. Her special area of interest is in working psychodynamically with groups and organisations. Ayesha’s diverse experience within these contexts span across race, ethnicity, class, and issues of power and conflict in a broad range of organisations.

Speaking Experience:

  1. University of Cape Town: 2010 – 2020
    Case presentations
    30 multidisciplinary team professionals (Clinical Psychologists, psychiatrists, medical doctors, social workers, nurses)
  2. Mental Health Training 2019 – 20 participants
  3. EAPA-SA Conference 2019
    Who is the patient? Using a systems-psychodynamic approach to intervene with an organisation – 300 people