NEW Leadership Summit 2020: Takeaways and Action Items

Summit 2020 was an incredible experience, with opportunities to learn from the best of the best over two days of thought-provoking, moving, funny, and transformative conversations. As we walk out the door, the real work begins – so we asked our speakers for key takeaways from their talks that you can take to with you. Here’s what they provided us in their own words!


Edge: Turning Adversity into Advantage
Laura Huang, Harvard Associate Professor and Author

You can hone your ability to read your audience and the ways in which others perceive you, so that you can redirect these perceptions and attributions.
Obstacles, constraints, and stereotypes — they don’t always have to be setbacks; they can work to our advantage.
The “system” and the “structure” might be imperfect… but individuals can still gain and create their own edge within an imperfect system.

Keep Rising: Resilient Leadership

Mary Kay Bowman, Global Head of Buyer and Seller Solutions, Visa

Use being a generalist to your advantage. Knowing a little about a lot of things can help you move things forward in surprising ways.
Always be building, whether that’s a product, a company, your personal leadership style or something totally different. Invest the time early and you will undoubtedly see pay off down the line.

Skill Up, Breakouts Round 1

Wellness | Small Changes, Big Shifts

Dr. Michelle Robin, Chiropractor, Wellness Expert and Author

Be Grateful for what is working in your life.
Sleep is mandatory for a healthy immune system, healthy hormones, and a peaceful mind.
Hydrate “Be Grape not a Raisin”.
Eat real food to feel alive!

Declare a Bold Vision and Share It

Ida Chacon, Fast Forward Leadership Trainer

When you write something it is 42% more likely to happen-writing your Vision will help you live more intentionally
Share your Vision—when you share aloud it is more likely to happen because people want to help you stay accountable
You have one life—it is your choice how to play and how to live it

Kick Chaos to the Curb

Helene Segura, Productivity Consultant

The most common time leaks are caused by interruptions – from others and ourselves.
Implement structure and flow in order to pivot more nimbly when you’re hit with the unexpected.

A Seat at the Table

Minda Harts, Bestselling Author of “The Memo”

Self-advocacy is one of the greatest acts of self-love.
Success is not a solo sport.

On My Way Up: Lessons Learned

Rashmi Kumar, Chief Information Officer, Hewlett Packard Enterprise

“Bias for action”
“Own your career plan”

Onward and Upward: Starbucks’ Racial Justice Journey

Nzinga Shaw, Chief Diversity Officer, Starbucks

Don’t wait for a public-facing crisis to develop an inclusion & diversity strategy. Be proactive and intentional about embedding this work into the rhythm of the business and treat it as a core component of your holistic business model so that your organization is prepared should an emergency arise.
Trying is not good enough. We have to do the hard work and drive for results. When we were in school as young students, our parents would not accept us bringing home Ds and Fs with the caveat that we tried to do good. The inclusion & diversity journey in the workplace is not different. We should not be rewarded for failing to produce results.

Skill Up, Breakouts Round 2

Owning Your Value (Busting Imposter Syndrome)

Neha Sampat, CEO of GenLead|BelongLab

“You don’t have to fake it ’til you make it. When you are feeling unqualified, could it instead be that you are actually uniquely qualified? Explore how your unique identities, skills, experiences, and perspectives make you uniquely qualified for what you do or want to do, and you’ll redefine leadership in a way that feels authentic, has greater impact, and paves new paths forward for those who come after you.”

Just Belonging: Come as You Are

Kori Carew, Attorney and Inclusion Consultant

A belonging that does not insist on equity and justice for all is not true belonging.
Genuine inclusion creates environments where people can show up as themselves and belong. Inclusion is not about fitting in

Growing Up and Standing Up

Cristela Alonzo, Comedian, Writer & Producer

“Being the only one in the room”
“Taking chances you never thought you would”


My Sister’s Keeper: Pulling All Women Through

Vinitaa Jayson, SVP, Human Resources, North America, P&G

Look at what your data says.  Do you have women of color represented …

In Top jobs?
Throughout the talent pipeline?
And on the key leadership teams?

Higher Ground: Where Do We Go from Here?

Abbe Luersman, Chief Human Resources Officer, Ahold Delhaize

UN policy brief published in April, “Across the globe, women earn less, save less, hold less secure jobs, are more likely to be employed in the informal sector. They have less access to social protections and are the majority of single-parent households. Their capacity to absorb economic shocks is therefore less than that of men.”
Further research posted in the Lancet in August stated that an estimated 740 million women are employed in the informal economy. In developing nations, such work constitutes more than two-thirds of female employment. As the world locked down, these jobs quickly disappeared.
And a recent McKinsey study showed that women’s jobs are 1.8 times more vulnerable to this crisis than men’s jobs. One reason for this greater effect on women is that the virus is significantly increasing the burden of unpaid care, which is already disproportionately carried by women. In fact, we do an average of 75% of the world’s total unpaid-care work, including child-care, caring for the elderly, cooking, and cleaning. COVID-19 has disproportionately increased the time women spend on family responsibilities by 1.5 to 2.0 hours in the United States—so it is not surprising that women have dropped out of the workforce at a higher rate than explained by labor-market dynamics alone.

Power & Privilege: White Women, Black Women and the World We Make Together

Karen Fleshman, Author of “White Women: We Need to Talk” and Anti-Racism Advocate

Black women and white women need each other to succeed at work.  To make our mutual success possible, white women need to overcome our fear of Black women and earn their trust through consistent Intentional ally actions. A great way to start is to get to know each other better.


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