Inspiring Leadership with Diversity, Inclusion & Cultural Competence

Posts tagged ‘diversity leadership retreat’

Valuable Knowledge Gained At 2014 Diversity Leadership Retreat

The Society for Diversity wrapped up its 2014 Diversity Leadership Retreat on Friday, July 25 in Orlando, Fla. with over 70 people in attendance over the two day conference. The event provided valuable knowledge to those in attendance, and everyone walked away with materials and information to take back to their companies.

The first day of the conference started with a keynote presentation from Isaias Zamarripa, Director of Global Workforce Diversity, Johnson Controls. His presentation highlighted the connections between employee networks, diversity recruiting and bottom line impact. After Zamarripa’s presentation, the attendees got the option to attend breakout sessions, such as unconscious bias and the role of the chief diversity officer.

During the lunch hour on July 24, the Diversity Leadership Awards were presented by Ericka Dunlap, 2004 Miss America. Dunlap presented the following awards to their recipients:

  • Corporate Diversity Leader- FordHarrison, LLP
  • Educational Diversity Leader- Nadia Quarles, University of Chicago
  • Non-Profit Diversity Leader- American Speech-Language-Hearing Association
  • Society for Diversity Member of the Year- Dr. Ken Coopwood, Missouri State University

These recipients are leaders in the diversity and inclusion field by being thought leaders and striving to be the top in their industry for D&I efforts.

After the presentation of these awards, there was a panel on supplier diversity. The day finished with additional breakout sessions that attendees could choose from.

“All of the sessions provided vast amounts of information to those who attended,” explained Leah Smiley, The Society for Diversity president. “Choosing which sessions to attend must have been difficult because there were always sessions going on at the same time that were relevant to anyone in attendance.”

The second day started off with a keynote presentation by Dr. Freeman Hrabowski, President, University of Maryland-Baltimore. His presentation allowed attendees to tell Dr. Hrabowski what they wanted to learn from him, and he tailored his presentation to what he was asked about.

“Dr. Hrabowski’s presentation was highly interactive,” stated Smiley. “I think that people walked away with more insight and information than they would have thought possible from an hour discussion.”

Another keynote speaker, Dr. Shirley Davis Sheppard, highlighted the lunch hour. Her presentation was on the “10 Global Trends that are Keeping CEOs up at Night.” Her presentation was on par with the other presenters, and it had many attendees walking away wanting more.

The event ended on July 25 with a thank you speech from Smiley, “I appreciated everyone who attended the event, and I can’t wait to see everyone again at next year’s conference.”

While the 2014 Diversity Leadership Retreat is over, planning has begun on the 2015 event. The planning committee has already decided that the event will be hosted in Charlotte, N.C., and it will be moved to October in order to more easily accommodate attendees’ schedules. More information about next year’s event will be provided at a later date, but information can also be found on The Society for Diversity’s website, http://www.societyfordiversity.org.

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Former Miss America to Present Awards at 2014 Diversity Leadership Retreat

The Society for Diversity is proud to announce that Ericka Dunlap, former Miss America and Miss Florida, will present the Champions for Diversity Leadership Awards at the 2014 Diversity Leadership Retreat on July 24. The awards will be presented to those who are thought leaders and pioneers for diversity and inclusion within their organization or industry.

Recently, Dunlap reached out to The Society for Diversity to find out how she could be involved with the 2014 Diversity Leadership Retreat. As a diversity advocate, she wanted to ensure that she could attend the retreat in some capacity.

“We are excited to have Ericka Dunlap to present our awards,” explained Leah Smiley, President, The Society for Diversity. “As former Miss America and the first African American woman to become Miss Florida, she understands what it takes to be a thought leader and passionate about something bigger than yourself, especially diversity.”

Dunlap will be awarding four awards in the following categories: Corporation, Education Institution, Non-Profit Organization and The Society for Diversity Member of the Year. The nominees for these awards are as follows:

  • Dr. Shelvy Campbell, Ph.D., Assistant Dean for Diversity, Marshall University, Joan C. Edwards School of Medicine & School of Pharmacy
  • Dr. Ken Coopwood, Vice President of Diversity and Inclusion, Missouri State University
  • Peggy Harris, MHA, FACHE, CDM, SPHR, Assistant Vice President, Office of Diversity & Inclusion, Carolinas HealthCare System
  • Tracey K. Jaensch, Partner, FordHarrison LLP
  • Floyd W. Pitts, JD Senior Vice President & Chief Diversity Officer, American Red Cross
  • Nadia M. Quarles, Esq. Assistant Vice President, Business Diversity Office of Business Diversity, University of Chicago
  • American Speech-Language-Hearing Association
  • FordHarrison LLP
  • Walgreens Corporation

“The organizations and individuals that have been nominated are the best in their respective fields, and they have exemplified what it means to use diversity and inclusion to better their organization and industry,” stated Smiley. “It was a difficult decision to choose the winners, but we are excited to announce them later this week.”

There is still time to register for the 2014 Diversity Leadership Retreat to see Erick Dunlap present the Champions for Diversity Leadership Awards, as well as attend the keynote presentations and sessions that will provide immense knowledge about diversity and inclusion. For more information on the retreat, awards or to register visit retreat.societyfordiversity.org.

Learning from the Best

By Leah Smiley, CDE

Today’s Wall Street Journal reports that Wal-Mart intends to grow by embracing a smaller store concept. This business strategy reflects changing times and shifting customer preferences. Doug McMillon, Chief Executive of the world’s largest retailer, recently gave Wal-Mart executives a homework assignment:  read “The Everything Store,” by Jeff Bezos, Founder of Amazon.com Inc. “According to the book, Mr. Bezos himself studied Wal-Mart as he built Amazon, internalizing its credo of acting fast and experimenting often.” Mr. McMillon acknowledges that he learned from previous Wal-Mart executives, who were instrumental in leading the organization to dominance.

Since the retirement of many Diversity and Inclusion (D&I) pioneers, organizations have resorted to placing D&I back under the auspices of HR. For many, there was no transfer of knowledge or urgency in designing an Office with an integrated impact on operations. Last month, I even read about a Chief Diversity Officer that was “promoted” to Vice President. Until then, I was wrongly under the impression that a “Chief” anything was a high-level position (e.g., Chief Financial Officer, Chief Technology Officer, Chief Marketing Officer).

Seriously, setting aside my Gen-X sarcasm, what does the future hold for D&I if organizations continue to create “token” positions? Or if people taut the successes of some women or a few people of color and presume that we ‘no longer need diversity and inclusion’? Or if we continue to have practitioners ‘wing it’ because they are afraid to admit that their race, ethnicity or gender does NOT equate to diversity expertise?

I have always said, and still say, that diversity and inclusion is a science. Remember that subject in school that entailed, “the intellectual and practical activity encompassing the systematic study of the structure and behavior of the physical and natural world through observation and experiment”? Interestingly enough, Mr. Bezos used that word “experiment” in his tell-all book, “The Everything Store”.

Just as Amazon.com grew by learning from Wal-Mart, this field of D&I also requires practitioners to learn from experts who have significant accomplishments and will empower us to avoid the mistakes of early D&I pioneers. We don’t have to wing it anymore. All of the pioneers did not retire. And there are many who are making a significant impact through D&I. Therefore, it’s time to elevate our endeavors and strive for achievement and excellence.

In an article entitled, “Do We Really Need Diversity Offices”, Dr. John Fitzgerald Gates, national diversity expert, advises Diversity and Inclusion to go beyond workplace satisfaction or risk prevention—HR and legal are already adept in those areas. Organizations really need Diversity and Inclusion leaders who can address strategic business challenges in marketing and multicultural communications, supplier diversity, boardroom diversity, and international affairs.  For example, in “Wal-Mart Looks to Grow by Embracing Smaller Stores” the Wall Street Journal states that, Wal-Mart “has stumbled in country after country in its attempts to expand overseas, even as it remains a dominant retailing force in countries like Mexico and Canada.”  Guess what? This is a common problem for many global organizations, and it represents an opportunity for D&I.

In seizing the opportunity however, we must be highly skilled in competitive intelligence, strategic planning by business unit, big data demographics and projections, as well as business measurement systems. We also need to master the differences between cultures– outside of black/white or male/female. Hence, Diversity and Inclusion must be the glue that turns business goals into reality.

How valuable would this type of learning be to you and your organization?

I encourage you to attend the 2014 Diversity Leadership Retreat, where you can learn all of this and more. Most importantly, you will be encouraged to engage in “Planning for the Future: Linking Diversity, Demographics and Dollars” and contributing to transformative impact. For more information, log onto: http://retreat.societyfordiversity.org/

 

Sources:
Wall Street Journal
John F Gates

Diversity Certification: A Hybrid Course Offering

By Ed Burns, CDP

As part of the 2014 Diversity Leadership Retreat, the Institute for Diversity Certification, the non-profit subsidiary of the Society, has included on the conference program two learning tracks registrants may attend via a hybrid classroom course.

Reflecting the Institute’s popular programs for diversity practitioners and executives, there will be two separate conference certification tracks, one for the Certified Diversity Professional (CDP) credentials, and the other for the Certified Diversity Executive (CDE) credentials. Those wishing to obtain their CDE credentials will attend class sessions on July 24 during the retreat, while those wishing to obtain CDP credentials will attend classes on July 25. They will not only attend classes, but have the opportunity to attend the keynote presentations, as well as the breakout sessions on the day that they are not taking their respective classes.

In addition to earning CDE and CDP credentials, those who currently have credentials can earn credit hours for continuing education. Each designee is required to complete 60 hours of continuing education every three years after earning credentials in order to keep their credentials up to date.

Along with the study guides and the exam review sessions, registrants who attend the Institute’s learning tracks can earn their valuable credentials with a successful candidate project and an exam score of 80% or higher.

For more information on the 2014 Diversity Leadership Retreat or the Institute for Diversity Certification, visit http://www.societyfordiversity.org.

 

Educating More People on How to Use Diversity in the Workplace

By Danniella Banks

There are many conferences each year that bring together professionals from various industries and organizations, and for many professionals, it is difficult to decide which ones to attend. One no-brainer choice for this year should be the 2014 Diversity Leadership Retreat because all businesses can benefit from learning more about diversity and inclusion in the workplace.

If that is not enough to convince someone to attend, then the list of exceptional speakers should provide evidence that this conference will give attendees invaluable knowledge. The speakers include (in presentation order):

  • Isaias Zamarripa, Johnson Controls
  • Trudy Bourgeois, The Center for Workforce Excellence
  • Carol Sankar, Sankar Enterprises
  • Dr. Fiona Citkin, Expert MS Inc.
  • Susana Rinderle, Susana Rinderle Consulting LLC
  • Leah Smiley, The Society for Diversity
  • Dr. Sandra Jowers-Barber, University of the District of Columbia
  • Enrique Ruiz, PositivePsyche.Biz Corp.
  • Shulunda Gibson, Speech & Voice Care Center
  • Ricardo Torres, Permanent Solutions Labor Consultants
  • Mary L Martinez, APT Metrics Inc.
  • Martin George, Language Training Center
  • Jaime Penahererra, Latino Health and Education Consortium
  • Effenus Henderson, HenderWorks Consulting
  • Malik Ali, Central and North Florida Minority Supplier Development Council
  • Diana Bolivar, Hispanic Chamber of Commerce of Metro Orlando
  • Dr. Ken Coopwood, Missouri State University
  • James Rodgers, J.O. Rodgers & Associates
  • Dr. Shelton Goode, PPL Corp.
  • Wokie Nwabueze, Princeton University
  • Dionardo Pizana, Michigan State University
  • Dr. Paul Henry Hawkins, Working Diversity Inc.
  • Dr. Freeman Hrabowski, University of Maryland-Baltimore
  • Lisa I Perez, HBL Resources
  • Rosalie Chamberlain, Rosalie Chamberlain Consulting & Coaching
  • Charlie Parker Jr., University of Missouri-Columbia
  • Dwain Celistan, DHR International
  • Frank Matthews, Diverse Issues in Higher Education
  • Juan Gilbert, Diverse Issues in Higher Education
  • Dr. Shirley Davis Sheppard, The Success Doctor and SHRM
  • Dr. Eddie Moore Jr., America & Moore LLC
  • Alvin Singh, ARS Media
  • Ini Augustine, SocialWise Media Group
  • Sharon E. Davis, SeDA Consulting
  • Nadine Vogle, Springboard Consulting

These speakers come from various backgrounds and types of organizations, which will help to educate more people on how to use diversity in the workplace to increase revenues and have a productive workforce.

With all of these speakers, it will be difficult to choose which one is the best or most interesting, but to be honest, I am most looking forward to the session entitled, “Overcoming Multi-Generational Workplace Challenges,” with Lisa I Perez, Rosalie Chamberlain and Charlie Parker Jr. This topic is something that has always been interesting to me, so I can’t wait to see what they have to say about it compared to what I have heard and read previously.

With so many wonderful speakers, you don’t want to miss your chance to hear them all speak at one place, the 2014 Diversity Leadership Retreat.

HELP WANTED: Seeking Leaders with the 3C’s

By Leah Smiley

 

The Associated Press reported that the Board of Directors at American Apparel voted to oust its Founder and CEO, Dov Charney, regarding an investigation into misconduct. What is interesting is that we discuss Dov Charney in the Institute for Diversity Certification’s credentialing program, specifically pertaining to the legal risk that American Apparel faces involving alleged inappropriate sexual conduct in the Executive offices.

While this brilliant Chief Executive is renowned for his unconventional approach and scalable business concept, a search is officially underway for new leadership at American Apparel. In a recent Forbes article, New York Times Best Selling Author Kevin Kruse defines leadership as “a process of social influence, which maximizes the efforts of others, towards the achievement of a goal.” This definition of leadership also applies to Diversity and Inclusion professionals, who are continually seeking to influence the social and cultural climate of the organizations with which we interact.

Nonetheless, in “The Corporate Diversity Charade,” John Fitzgerald Gates, Ph.D., a national diversity expert asserts that “the dirty little secret of corporate America and the practice of diversity is that 25 years after establishing ‘diversity’ offices, most companies have not developed a mature understanding of how diversity can contribute to their bottom lines.” Or, diminish earnings and market share. This is evident when executives, like Dov Charney, have diversity within the ranks, but continue to get hit with harassment, discrimination and retaliation claims. According to Wikipedia, since the mid-2000’s, Dov Charney has been the subject of at least 5 sexual harassment lawsuits that are pending, or have been settled or dismissed.

Dov Charney, however, is not the only misbehaving CEO. Bloomberg Business Week reported that last night John Legere, T-Mobile’s ‘way cool’ CEO, made an ‘unfunny’ comment when he told potential customers that his competitors were, “raping you for every penny you have…” Indeed, we are witnessing a transition from a stale and stodgy C-Suite to corporate environments where shock and awe are the order of the day. Yet, here’s where a skilled Diversity and Inclusion executive is invaluable—because he/she can make the business case in a way that senior leadership trusts and respects.

Here’s what he/she could say in a one-on-one meeting, “Mr. CEO, our employees, customers and investors love our culture because it is so radical, creative and fun. We need to keep that culture– but let’s make sure that we don’t forget about the financial and organizational risks associated with crossing the line. For example, when you said, or did ___________. It could cause some people to think that we don’t value ___________, and you and I know that is not true.”

June 19th marks the 50th anniversary of the Civil Rights Act, and along with civil rights leaders, the business community was a vital component to the passage of this transformational legislation. We have made progress on many fronts, but there is still much work to do.

The word diversity implies that there are many ways in which equity and inclusion professionals could perform this work—but we must master the 3 C’s of leadership: courage, coalitions and competence.

3CsCourage
In the workplace, leaders must look to the future and embrace the change that keeps organizations ahead of their competitors. Robert J. Tamasy of CBMC Canada writes, “most high achievers, those that have left indelible marks in their areas of endeavor, have been ones that exhibited uncommon courage – willing to swim against the current, to challenge the status quo, to venture into the unknown with no guarantees of success.” Mr. Tamasy asserts that there are 4 ways to demonstrate courage: in taking a stand, proceeding despite danger, persevering, and acting on convictions.

Coalitions
I talk to a lot of courageous D&I practitioners, and a common complaint is that this type of work is very hard, and you receive little support. But it’s time to change this phenomenon and adapt the true meaning of inclusion, or working with others. This is the only way that Diversity and Inclusion professionals can go beyond the 4 walls in the Office of Diversity toward building programs and structures that are sustainable and successful.

The Free Dictionary by Farlex defines a coalition as “an alliance or union between groups, factions, or parties, for some specific action; the act of making or becoming a single unit.” Could this definition imply that the Office of Diversity, working alone, is outside of the scope and parameters of the organizational fabric? And by forming “coalitions” (especially with critics), the Office of Diversity will be able to perform specific actions better? I’m being facetious, but you get the point.

Competence
Finally, our courage and coalitions must be balanced with competence. This may be indicated by putting strategic ideas in writing, linking diversity and inclusion to business objectives, and using data to substantiate one’s interventions and goals. For example, beyond reporting how many people attended a diversity training session, it may be better to measure the outcomes of such learning.

According to the Business Briefing “Learning and Analytics” by Success Factors (an SAP Company), “the inability of companies to establish robust statistics that clearly demonstrate direct links between learning and business improvement” is a major reason why some feel that learning interventions are ineffective. “Without analytics,” it suggests, “you are at risk of driving your learning strategy blind, and never realizing the results you expected to gain. By combining traditional training reporting with business data from other systems…it is possible to quantify the commercial benefits of any learning activity in real time.”

 

The Society for Diversity understands that unlike the Civil Rights Movement of the 1960’s and 1970’s, there are thousands of diversity and inclusion leaders. Accordingly, the Society offers a variety support systems such as the 2014 Diversity Leadership Retreat, diversity certification, resources and technical assistance, to members and non-members alike. Our goal is to empower many leaders to become the most knowledgeable, skilled, and practiced diversity experts in the world. And through our goal, we can help others see the value in diversity and experience measurable business impact.

American Apparel isn’t the only company seeking new leadership; the Society for Diversity also wants leaders with the 3 C’s to support us on this journey.

~~~~~~~~~~~~
Leah Smiley is the President of the Society for Diversity, the #1 and largest professional association for Diversity and Inclusion. For more information about the Society for Diversity, log onto http://www.societyfordiversity.org.

10 Reasons Why the 2014 Diversity Leadership Retreat is the Go-To Event of the Year

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Join the Society for Diversity from July 24-25 in Orlando, FL for what will be “the must-attend diversity and inclusion conference of the year.”

If you need to drive results by transitioning D&I from good to great, here are 10 reasons why you can’t afford to miss “Planning for the Future: Linking Diversity, Demographics & Dollars” this July:

1. KEYNOTES. Inspired sessions from stars like Craig B. Clayton Sr., Dr. Shirley Davis Sheppard, Dr. Freeman Hrabowski, Effenus Henderson, and more.

2. THOUGHT LEADERS. Gain actionable intelligence from 16 workshop sessions with D&I leaders, such as Dr. Shelton Goode, Dr. Ken Coopwood, Dr. Eddie Moore, Carole Weinstein, Ini Augustine, Nadine Vogle, Mary L. Martinez, and Enrique Ruiz, to name a few.

3. DIVERSITY CERTIFICATION. Start working on your CDP or CDE credentials in a certification track with noted D&I expert, Leah Smiley.

4. NATIONAL AWARDS. It’s not too late to nominate yourself, or your organization, for a Champions for Diversity Leadership Award. This national awards ceremony will recognize leaders who inspire, foster, recognize, demonstrate, encourage and promote best practices, ideas, products, technology and strategies for diversity and inclusion to enhance great places to live and/or work. Make a nomination now at http://events.constantcontact.com/register/event?llr=abawbmdab&oeidk=a07e92zxd6c4f5068da

5. CONTINUING EDUCATION CREDITS. CDE and CDP designees from the Institute for Diversity Certification will receive 20 continuing education credits, AND credits are also being requested from the Human Resource Certification Institute (HRCI) and ASTD Certification Institute.

6. DIVERSITY CAREER FAIR & VENDOR EXPO. Find solutions to enhance the quality of your D&I interventions, or meet with prospective customers at the Diversity Career Fair and Vendor Expo.

7. REAL-WORLD SKILLS. Learn how to confront modern-day diversity and inclusion challenges, while planning for the future in a changing field.

8. PEER SUPPORT. Network and talk with the right Retreat attendees from Wal-Mart, Bank of America, Cisco, Walgreens, American Red Cross National Headquarters, Princeton University, Federal Reserve Bank of St. Louis, Harland Clarke, Humana, U.S. Department of Defense, and 400 more attendees!

9. DISNEY WORLD & TOURIST ATTRACTIONS. Bring your entire family to the U.S. News & World Report’s 2014 Best Hotel in Orlando AND get discounted tickets to Disney Theme Park and Resorts.

10. DIVERSE EXPERIENCES WITH A HIGH ROI. From Salsa dancing and golf, to the future of diversity and specific examples of how to increase the organizational value of D&I, your return on investment from “Planning for the Future: Linking Diversity, Demographics & Dollars” will be huge!

If that isn’t enough – Use the Promo Code FLASH514 at http://retreat.societyfordiversity.org  to receive $200 off! Hurry, this special ends on Monday, May 19th.

P.S. You can learn more about the Retreat at a FREE webinar on Wednesday, May 21st. Get the log-in information for the webinar at https://attendee.gotowebinar.com/register/3776782116970362882

 
We look forward to seeing you in Orlando! http://retreat.societyfordiversity.org

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