Actions Speak Louder: Building Organizational Accountability for Equity, Diversity & Inclusion

image of woman employee looking at camera and urging organizational accountability on EDI
Date: Thursday, June 2, 2022

In this special webinar event, leading voices from the Center for Creative Leadership will discuss the critical need to hold organizations accountable for making progress on equity, diversity, and inclusion (EDI) initiatives. Globally, we recognize that EDI-focused organizational culture change is a complex journey … one that takes time, introspection, thoughtful conversation, and strategic planning.

In the United States, as we reflect on the 2-year anniversary of the murder of George Floyd — and the public denouncements of racism from individual leaders and corporations around the world — it’s important to pause and assess how much progress has actually been made, and build the capacity for organizational accountability around EDI moving forward. Join us for this special online event!

Building Organizational Accountability for EDI: Virtual Event Schedule

11:00 AM ET — Welcome & Event Kickoff

  • Join us to hear from our VP of Equity, Diversity & Inclusion Michael DePass on CCL’s own EDI journey, including what we’ve learned along the way, and the work that still needs to be done.

11:15 AM ET — Session 1 — Actions Speak Louder: Tracking EDI From Cosmetic to Conversation & Commitment

  • CCL research and data scientists Marcia A. Dawkins, PhD, and Ramya Balakrishnan, MS, will share findings from their ongoing study of corporate communications around equity, diversity, and inclusion (EDI). Through an analysis of over 200 statements from leading companies in response to the public witnessing of George Floyd’s murder in 2020, the study reveals that effective corporate communications on EDI require organizations to move past cosmetic platitudes and hold themselves accountable with detailed action plans for systemic change. In this session, you’ll learn:

    • The roles and visions leaders and organizations constructed in many EDI statements to drive culture change;
    • How leaders and organizations can use consistent measures to embrace transparency and promote organizational accountability;
    • The ways that EDI communications and commitments can create safe spaces for individual growth, while acknowledging collective organizational purpose; and
    • The risks organizations face when their actions do not align with their words, especially in the era of employee activism.

12:00 PM ET — 5-Minute Break

12:05 PM ET — Session 2 — Setting a Strong Foundation: EDI Organizational Culture Survey With Faurecia

  • Smita Mehta, Director of Diversity, Equity & Inclusion at Faurecia North America (a Forvia company), and Stephanie Wormington and Joanne Dias of CCL will highlight the importance of using data-driven decisionmaking to support sustainable EDI impact. Before organizations can create systemic change, they must understand the current experiences and future expectations of all of their employees. Charting a path for a more equitable future requires a transparent, inclusive assessment of the current state. In this session, you’ll learn: 

    • How to leverage data collection to create a foundation for an impactful EDI journey;
    • Critical foundation steps to plan, develop, implement, and learn from an organization-wide assessment;
    • How to turn data reflections into meaningful action;
    • The importance of taking a “whole systems” approach to culture transformation, rather than relying on individuals to drive collective change; and
    • What Faurecia (a Forvia company) has learned through their co-creation process with our EDI experts on building organizational accountability for increasing equity, diversity, and inclusion.

12:55 PM ET — Closing Remarks

Organizational accountability is critical to changing systems and making real and lasting progress toward achieving more equitable, diverse, and inclusive workplaces. We can partner with you to create an organizational culture where all your talent can thrive with our Equity, Diversity & Inclusion practice.

About the Presenters

Marcia Alesan Dawkins, PhDMarcia Alesan Dawkins, PhD
Senior Research Scientist
Center for Creative Leadership

Marcia is a Senior Research Scientist at the Center for Creative Leadership. Her current research focuses on promoting equitable and inclusive organizational cultures through strategic communication. Her thought leadership and award-winning publications have been featured in media outlets such as BBC World, NPR, AOL Originals, ABC News, HuffPo Live, along with several podcasts. Prior to joining CCL, Marcia was a communication professor at the University of Southern California, corporate consultant, and columnist.
Ramya Balakrishnan, MSRamya Balakrishnan, MS
Data Scientist
Center for Creative Leadership

Ramya is a Data Scientist at the Center for Creative Leadership. Her current work involves data collection, building AI based models, and data visualization to drive key insights from internal and external data. Her thought leadership combines cutting-edge data science, data ethics, and machine learning techniques to analyze information equitably and effectively. Prior to joining CCL, Ramya was a data analyst with Tokai Carbon.
Joanne DiasJoanne Dias
Senior Faculty Member
Center for Creative Leadership

Joanne serves as a senior faculty member for our Global Markets custom work based in Greensboro, NC. Her focus is on designing and delivering customized leadership programs for managers and executives within global organizations. Joanne utilizes her knowledge of organizational behavior, I/O psychology, and business expertise to develop program designs tailored to each organization’s unique needs. Joanne applies her passion for diversity and development to her work with organizations and their leaders in order to enable them to fulfill their potential in an ever-changing global marketplace.
Stephanie WormingtonStephanie Wormington
Former Director, Global Strategic Research
Center for Creative Leadership

Stephanie is a researcher with a background in developmental and educational psychology. Her research at CCL focused primarily on promoting equitable and inclusive organizational cultures, exploring collective leadership through networks, and enhancing motivation and empowerment for leaders across their professional journeys.
Smita MehtaSmita Mehta
Director of Diversity, Equity & Inclusion
Faurecia North America

Smita Mehta is the Director of Diversity, Equity and Inclusion at Faurecia North America, a Forvia company. She is leading a shift in corporate culture by enhancing and expanding the company’s DEI program to team members across the country. A former Emmy-nominated television news journalist, Smita served as a hard-hitting journalist in Detroit, Grand Rapids, MI and Rockford, IL for nearly 10 years before transitioning into corporate public relations. Since then, Smita has held many leadership positions in the companies where she worked and her community. Her commitment towards enhancing diversity and inclusion earned her a place in Oakland County’s Elite 40 Under 40 class of 2020.
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