It’s important that you set expectations for the meeting at the beginning, to keep the group on track and remind everyone of some ground rules. This could include things like:
We suggest everyone has their cameras on if they’re comfortable and ask people to be on mute if they’re not speaking, just to prevent distractions from the person who is speaking
Decide how you want everyone to interact – do you want people to raise their hands to speak? Are you quite happy for it to just be an open conversation?
Do mention not talking over the top of other people and waiting your turn to speak
General discussion about situations that you’ve dealt with or have personal experience in is okay, but any advice should be sought directly from a specialist
And keep in mind sometimes people just want to be heard, they might not even want advice anyway
We recognize that everyone is different and has experiences that vary, we welcome diversity, and we include that in our clubs
So, if there’s a specific topic you’re going cover during the meeting, let everyone know what you’ve got planned!
If it’s a scheduled discussion, you might want to think about if you need to assign roles, like someone keeping time or taking notes
During the first few meetings, it might be worth doing an ice-breaker activity while everyone is getting comfortable in the group dynamic and begin a dialogue for conversation
A list of these activities and conversation starters will be available on the Inclusee training website.
If you are going to complete an acknowledgement of country, this is when it’d be an appropriate time to complete it
If you do feel comfortable, this is the time to discuss using pronouns
Inclusee values diversity and respects the individuality and culture of all people with who we engage. Some of the ways we practice these values are to always call people by their preferred names and to share and use our personal gender pronouns.
If you’ve got any questions about this, please reach out to your ESO.