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women
AGENDA
MAY 12 - 13, 2020
WESTIN NEW YORK AT TIMES SQUARE,NEW YORK, NY
May 12 - 13, 2020

About the Conference

At the cusp of a new decade, we face remarkable new opportunities, new challenges, and new expectations for the advancement of gender parity and women’s leadership in our organizations. The push to change is accelerating, and those who don’t keep up will lose in the battle for talent, innovation, brand loyalty and more. This May, The Conference Board will host the 16th Annual Women's Leadership Conference.

Attendees can expect to hear from the women and men who are moving the needle on gender parity and advancing women leaders.  Our unique format will give all attendees the opportunity to explore case studies one-on-one with our speakers, and develop new, actionable strategies with peers. At the conclusion of the conference, participants will vote on the most innovative and most actionable programs and practices presented.

New features this year include:

  • Unique Case Study Format – All attendees will be able to hear key case study insights in focused Spark talks, followed by an extended period  in which the case study speakers will be available at  “nodes” around the conference floor to go deeper, answer questions, and ask questions of attendees. Attendees will be able to interact with each case study speaker or allocate time for deep dives with one or two.
  • Designing for Change – Table interactions in which each group picks a current gender parity challenge from one of the table members and brainstorms on innovations inspired by speaker insights.
  • Honors for “Most Innovative” and “Most Actionable” programs/practices, as voted by attendees, at the close of the conference.

Here are some of the topics we hope to discuss:

  • Will AI and data analytics battle implicit biases, or perpetuate them?
  • How is the newest generation being prepared to lead?
  • How are successes – or lapses – in gender parity efforts affecting brands?
  • Who is taking the lead in transforming recruitment, talent management, leadership development, and mentorship? 

Register by February 29, 2020 and SAVE $400!

Who Should Attend

We recommend this conference for senior executives who support equal leadership and new expectations for the advancement of gender parity and women’s leadership in your organization. Titles may include:

  • Directors of diversity and inclusion
  • Chief diversity officers
  • Chief human resources officers
  • Women’s initiative officers
  • Vice president of learning and development
  • Vice president and directors of talent management

 Earn Recertification Credits

CPE logo

Earn up to 10.5 CPE credits
Personnel/Human Resources
Requirements: Attendees must sign-in each day for full credit. Delivery Method: Group-Live; Program Level: Intermediate, Prerequisites: Bachelor’s degree or higher, Advanced Preparation: None

HRCI

This program has been approved for 8.75 (HR (General)) recertification credit hours toward aPHR, PHR, SPHR, PHRca, GPHR, PHRi, and SPHRi recertification through the HR Certification Institute (HRCI). For more information about certification or recertification, please visit the HR Certification Institute website at www.hrci.org.

SHRM

This program has been pre-approved for 8.75 PDCs for the SHRM-CP or SHRM-SCP. For more information about certification or recertification, please visit www.shrmcertification.org.

Get Involved

If you would like to get involved in this year’s conference, please contact us.

Souheil Badran, EVP, Chief Operating Officer, Northwestern Mutual

Cynthia Bowman, Chief Diversity & Inclusion and Talent Acquisition Officer, Bank of America

Siri Chilazi, Research Fellow, Women and Public Policy Program, Harvard University

Rhonda Clark, President, Corporate Plant Engineering, UPS

Rick Cotton, Executive Director, Port Authority of New York & New Jersey

Joy Fitzgerald, Vice President - Chief Diversity & Inclusion Officer, Eli Lilly and Company

Catherine Gacad, Senior Vice President, Advanced Technology & Partnerships, Wells Fargo

Jennifer Hatton, Executive Vice President, Follett Higher Education

Jennifer Openshaw, Founder and CEO, Girls With Impact

Ruth Rathblott, CEO, Harlem Educational Activities Fund

Laura Sabattini, Principal Researcher, The Conference Board

Teresa Sande, Vice President, Talent, OptumInsight, UnitedHealth Group

Poorvi Shah, Chief Executive Officer, Katalyst

Gretchen Stroud, Vice President, Global Learning & Talent COE, Hilton Worldwide

Natasha Velikoselskiy, Adjunct Professor, Columbia Business School

Day One
Tuesday, May 12, 2020

8 – 9 am Registration and Breakfast
9 – 9:10 am Welcome and Introductions
9:10 – 9:25 am

Opening Spark: The Power of Women Bringing Their Authentic Selves to Work

How does the inclusion of more women leaders and greater gender parity lead to better performance and more innovation? Does it come about as women advancing into leadership work to “fit in” at previously homogeneous cultures? Unlikely – it is the additional breadth of experiences and viewpoints that brings competitive advantages. Explore how individuals and organizations benefit when we each declare and embrace our differences rather than striving to fit in.

Ruth Rathblott, CEO, Harlem Educational Activities Fund

9:25 – 9:55 am

Why Being an Effective Male Ally Isn’t an “Extra” – It’s a Necessity

Any organizational leader knows that digital transformation is not solely an IT function. Brand-building is not exclusively a marketing function. Expense management is not only an auditor’s responsibility. And when it comes to empowering women, advocacy must not be women’s responsibility alone. Learn how the Chief Operating Officer of Northwest Mutual Souheil Badran encourages male colleagues to do the work to become indispensable allies for future women leaders.

Souheil Badran, EVP,Chief Operating Officer, Northwest Mutual

9:55 – 10:20 am Break
10:20 – 10:50 am

Focusing Your Business’ Superpowers on Advancing Women

Your organization likely has considerable resources and expertise on building your brand for future customers, and on understanding every aspect of your customer’s journey. Has this expertise been turned to understanding and revitalizing your brand as a recruiter of high potential women? Have the talent and resources used to understand the customer’s journey ever been directed toward understanding the employee journey of women at your organization? Discover the impact of directing your business’ “superpowers” toward recruiting, retaining and advancing women leaders.

Joy Fitzgerald, Vice President – Chief Diversity & Inclusion Officer, Eli Lilly and Company

 

10:50  – 11:20 am

Women in STEM Leadership: Initiatives and Impact  

UPS President of Corporate Plant Engineering Rhonda Clark is responsible for the construction and expansion of automated facilities in the midst of the company’s massive investment in transformative innovation. Learn from this leader of engineers and recent chair of UPS’s Women’s Leadership Development program how UPS attracts, retains and develops women in STEM.

Rhonda Clark, President, Corporate Plant Engineering, UPS

 

11:20 am – 12:00 pm

Taking Action: Brainstorming on Innovations to Advance Women Leaders

Using insights from the morning’s speakers, attendees will share challenges and brainstorm on innovative ways to tap organizational functions, resources and leadership to advance gender parity.

12:00 – 1:00 pm Lunch
1:00 – 1:30 pm

Keynote: Driving Change from the Top

The Port Authority of New York and New Jersey builds, operates, and maintains many of the most important infrastructure assets in the country, including New York metropolitan area airports and the World Trade Center site. Rick Cotton came to the position of Executive Director of The Port Authority with extensive experience at multiple government agencies and  25 years at NBC Universal, and set out on an agency transformation that includes a major increase in the percentage of women in management positions. Learn how this goal is being achieved.

Rick Cotton, Executive Director, The Port Authority of New York & New Jersey

 

Spark Talks and Conversation

1:30 – 1:50 pm

Evidence-Based Tactics to Battle Bias: What Works - and What Doesn't

Advancing diversity, equality and inclusion in our workplaces is essential and more topical than ever. Unconscious biases are a key cause of inequality in organizations today, yet research shows that de-biasing people’s minds is virtually impossible. Fortunately, cutting-edge evidence points to proven and effective structural solutions that allow us to design environments, processes and systems that create a level playing field for all. In her session, Siri will discuss the latest insights from behavioral research - both on what works and what doesn’t - and share practical strategies that advance equity in our workplaces through behavioral design, improved talent management and more inclusive culture.

Siri Chilazi, Research Fellow, Women and Public Policy Program, Harvard University

1:50 – 2:10 pm

Find Your Fierce: Navigate and Change the Systems that Feed Imposter Syndrome

The Harvard Business Review defines Imposter Syndrome as “as a collection of feelings of inadequacy that persist despite evident success,” with those suffering from it “unable to internalize their accomplishments, however successful they are in their field.” Advice related to Imposter Syndrome is almost always directed to the individual sufferer. Yet imposter syndrome can be exacerbated by organizational behaviors and should be addressed systemically. Learn how to identify and change the systems that feed Imposter Syndrome.

Teresa Sande, HR Executive and author of the forthcoming book, Find Your Fierce

2:10 – 2:30 pm

New Insights into Accelerating Leaders

Learn from the latest data and insights on what aspects of the leadership acceleration programs have the biggest impact on retention and rate of advancement.

Natasha Velikoselskiy, Adjunct Professor, Columbia Business School

 

2:30 – 3:00 pm

Walk & Talk: Sparked Conversations

All our Spark  speakers will be available at three “nodes” around the conference floor to go deeper, answer questions, and ask questions of attendees. Attendees can interact one-on-one with each speaker or allocate time for deep dives with one or two.

3:00 – 3:30 pm Break
3:30 – 4:10 pm

Routes to the Top: CEO and Board Positions

High level operational, P&L experience is often a prerequisite to receiving consideration for the position of CEO. Having had those experiences herself, UPS CHRO Charlene Thomas shares what it takes for organizations to advance more women into senior operational positions.

4:10 – 4:40 pm

Inspiring the Next Generation of Women Leaders

Discover the innovative ways business, government and nonprofit leaders are partnering to inspire a new generation of young women to embrace entrepreneurship, STEM, and leadership – and what those partners are learning about the goals, expectations and inspirations of the next generation. 

Jennifer Openshaw, Founder and CEO, Girls with Impact

 

4:40 – 5:00 pm

Taking Action: Sprint on New Practices

Attendees will engage in an idea sprint to generate new ways to take back and expand on the practices discussed this afternoon – on de-biasing institutions, battling imposter syndrome, accelerating leaders at all levels, and inspiring the next generation – at their own organizations.

5:00 pm Closing Remarks

 

 

Day Two
Wednesday, May 13, 2020
8:00 – 9:00 am
Registration and Breakfast
8:00 – 9:00 am

Breakfast Roundtables

Attendees are welcome to join a Breakfast Roundtable, led by our speakers and members of the Conference Board Leadership Council for Advancing Women, for small group discussions on topics such as:

  • Male Ally Engagement
  • The Metrics that Matter for Advancing Women
  • Sponsorship Innovations
  • Intersectionality
9:00 – 9:10 am Welcome
9:10 – 9:40 am

The Power of Transparency

At Bank of America, where more than 40% of people in management and more than 30% of the board of directors are women, top leadership understand the power of transparency. Learn how detailed, transparent metrics and the messages and incentives around them combine to embed a gender parity mission into the organization’s culture.

Cynthia  Bowman, Chief Diversity and Inclusion and Talent Acquisition Officer, Bank of America

 

9:40 – 10:10 am

Creating a “Best Place to Work” for Women

In 2019 Hilton ranked #1 on the Best Workplaces for Women U.S. list by Fortune and Great Place to Work. Learn about the investments in development initiatives, benefits, flexible working environments and more that support women’s success at every level, in a company where half of employees in the U.S. are women, including 53 percent at the management level.

Gretchen Stroud, Vice President, Global Learning & Talent COE, Hilton Worldwide

 

10:10 – 10:40 am Break

 

Spark Talks and Conversation

10:40 – 10:55 am

Research Report: The Future of ERGs

Employee resource groups – whether called ERGs, employee networks, affinity groups, or business resource groups – have been a core component of companies’ diversity and inclusion strategy for decades. Yet many organizations still struggle with business alignment and with keeping employee-group initiatives sustainable over time and across different regions of the world. This session outlines insights from new, exclusive Conference Board research looking at future trends for employee groups across different industries and global regions.  Key discussion points will include: How are employee groups, and women’s groups in particular, evolving across regions? How are employee groups responding to workforce and workplace changes? How can employee groups foster inclusion across intersectional identities and with allies?

Laura Sabattini, Ph.D., Principal Researcher, The Conference Board

 

10:55 – 11:10 am

The Future of Sponsorship

The role of sponsorship continues to be critical in the advancement of women. What are the most successful practices for connecting high performing women to committed sponsors?

Catherine Gacad, Senior Vice President, Advanced Technology & Partnerships, Wells Fargo

 

11:10 – 11:25 am

The Future of Job Design in Advancing Women

Smarter job design, aided by technology, has the potential to improve recruitment, retention and productivity for all impacted employees – but it can be especially important for women, who are still expected to  “balance” greater responsibilities outside the workplace and thus value flexible, energizing roles in the workplace. Discover how Follett Higher Education’s Deskless Workforce initiative has helped create an environment especially conducive to the recruitment, retention and advancement of women leaders.

Jennifer Hatton, Executive Vice President, Follett Higher Education

 

11:25 – 11:55 am

Walk & Talk: Sparked Conversations

All our Spark speakers will be available at three “nodes” around the conference floor to go deeper, answer questions, and ask questions of attendees. Attendees can interact one-on-one with each speaker or allocate time for deep dives with one or two.

 

11:55 am – 12:25 pm

From Rural Village to Corporate Management: Forging New Paths to Women’s Leadership in India

By 2027 the working-age population in India will be the largest in the world, almost 20% of the entire global labor force. Even incremental increases in labor force participation and gender parity in India can have massive impact and generate hundreds of billions in GDP. Learn how one organization and its global partners are tapping into what is possibly the nation’s most under-utilized resource – women from low-income communities. The organization prepares these young women to step into corporate and government roles, and aspire for leadership positions, becoming change-makers for India.

Poorvi Shah, Chief Executive Officer, Katalyst

12:25 - 12:40 pm

Voting and Recognition of Most Innovative and Most Actionable Practices

We conclude by voting on and recognizing the most innovative and most actionable practices we have discovered over the past two days.

12:40 pm Closing Remarks

 

LOCATION

The Westin New York at Times Square  
270 West 43rd Street
New York, NY 10036
Tel: 212-201-2700

To book a room at a discounted rate by 4/20/2020, click here.

Please note: Registration fees do not include hotel accommodations.

OUR MISSION

All proceeds support The Conference Board's educational, scientific, and not-for-profit mission.

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