Queen’s Counsel: Unconscious Bias Training

The Story

Queen’s Counsel is for excellence in advocacy in the higher courts. Recommendations for the award of Queen’s Counsel are made by the Queen’s Counsel Selection Panel which comprises of QCs and lay-people whose role it is to assess applications from Barristers who wish to be appointed.

In order to ensure that an applicant’s quality and ability is based on factors relevant to the assessment in question, and not influenced by unconscious assumptions, the Queen’s Counsel made the decision to invest in Unconscious Bias training for their selection panel, and a refresher on Competency Based Interviewing.

The Programme

Unconscious Bias: A Conversation

The ‘conversation’ with the Queen’s Counsel Selection Panel was facilitated by Alaba Okuyiga and focused on six key areas:

  1. Introducing Unconscious Bias
  2. The Psychology behind Unconscious Bias
  3. Examples of Unconscious Bias
  4. What might trigger our biases
  5. What we can do to mitigate our biases
  6. Recognise the impact of Unconscious Bias – and why it is important to be actively embraced at selection roles.

Refresher in Interviewing Techniques

This bespoke session, delivered by Dr Carol Barnes was designed to allow the group to:

  1. Explore specific interview approaches including: Power of Silence, Hypothetical, Motivational Interviewing & Critical Thinking
  2. Agree on a consistent approach for good practice
  3. Generate questions against the QC competency framework
  4. Review scoring / rating / calibration

The Trainer – Alaba Okuyiga

No matter what the programme or indeed, the level, Alaba has a talent for being able to engage every delegate in the room. His breadth of experience and passion for the subject equips him with a deep, practical understanding, a repertoire of best practice examples and anecdotes that really bring his programmes to life. Outside of the training room, Alaba has chaired over 300 selection panels and for over eight years he was the Home Secretary’ s Appointee & Chair of the West Midlands Police Authority Selection Panel.

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