Thursday, March 28, 2013

Five Reasons Nonprofits Should Attend the Multicultural Forum on Workplace Diversity Conference

In this blog post, you will hear from the Charities Review Council’s Program Director, Lynnea Atlas-Ingebretson, who will be representing the Charities Review Council at the upcoming Multicultural Forum on Workplace Diversity. If you are ‘on the fence’ about whether to attend the Multicultural Forum, this one’s for you! 

This amazing national conference happens every year in the Minneapolis. This year’s theme is Our Time to Lead.

The need for true leadership in Diversity and Inclusion has never been greater. Minnesota nonprofits are facing a challenging and shifting landscape. We have significant population changes, shifting funding priorities, growing competition, and nation-leading disparities in education, health care, and employment. Diversity and Inclusion will play a vital role in determining our success around these disparities.

I have attended this conference for five years and leave refreshed, invigorated, and ready to take action. Most importantly, I leave hopeful for our future and our work. Here are my five reasons local and national nonprofits should attend this conference:

1. Cross Sector Pollination

Independent and Public Sectors folks make up 50% of conference attendees. Steve Humerickhouse, Director of the Forum, shares “every organization—even nonprofits—needed to have a global perspective.” Large health care organizations, NGOs, and multi-national for-profit corporations have great case studies and decades of effort on workplace diversity and inclusion that any size organization can learn from. Nonprofits bring their rich legacy of partnerships, collaborations, social responsibility and justice which for-profits can learn from. The Forum is a rich and vibrant solutions-oriented environment. 

2. World Class Thinkers & Leaders 

If you get excited hearing someone speak about things they know so well you get ideas yourself, this is the place for you. You will discover what it takes for employees with diverse backgrounds and experiences to create, grow, and innovate. This conference is great regardless of your professional level. Steve shared that “cultural competence from everyone in the organization is required to effectively work with colleagues, partners, and participants from around the world or around the corner.”

3. Good Scholarships! 

Scholarships are available for the Multicultural Forum. Check out the Scholarship Availability page. Who is eligible: Students and Employees of nonprofit organizations with budgets of $5 million or less. Conference components available for scholarships include:
  • Day 1 Pre-Conference Professional Development Institutes (3.5 hours of intensive study) 
  • Day 2 Conference- Workshops, Morning and Lunch Sessions 
  • Day 3 Conference Workshops- Workshops, Morning and Lunch Sessions 
There are great volunteer opportunities too! Volunteering is a great way to participate in the conference.

4. Great Sessions Day 2 & Day 3 


There are roughly 30 sessions a day. This is a learning conference, so you are encouraged to change sessions if you think you can get a better return on your time in another session. Here are some sessions I’m looking forward to attending:

Day 2 sessions Include:
  • Diversity ROI Strategies for Government, Higher Education, and Non-Profit Organizations; 
  • Creating a Truly Inclusive Diversity Strategy that Includes People with Disabilities; 
  • Working Together for Minnesota’s Prosperity: Closing the Achievement Gap for Persons of Color 
Day 3 sessions include:
  • Diversity, Inclusion and the Unconscious Mind: How Does What We Know About the Brain Impact the Way We Do Diversity Work in the 21st Century? 
  • Strategies for Inclusive Performance Appraisals and Millennials in the Workplace – How to Attract and Motivate a New Generation 
  • Bias and Cultural Competence in Recruitment and Selection


5. The Professional Develop Institutes (my personal favorite) 

Day 1: Professional Development Institutes:
  • Predictive Analytics for Diversity (lead by Hubbard and Hubbard - this is really cool)
  • Negotiating Difficult Conversations: Tools for Gaining Senior Leader Buy-In & Action 
  • Neuroscience of Inclusion: Leading with the Brain in Mind 
  • The Maslow Connection: What Every Business/D&I Leader Should Know About Building Inclusive, Productive Workplaces 

It’s time for each of us to ignite the leader within ourselves and to explore diversity in new ways. Hope to see you there!

For more information about how to get involved with the Multicultural Forum on Workplace Diversity, visit their website at http://www.stthomas.edu/mcf/.

1 comment:

David Warner said...

Nice blog your doing really good job keep it up. It should have knowledge about the good reasons for NGOs to attend the Workplace Diversity Conference, it also accelerates the persuasion of colleagues to work together effectively, thanks
Joseph Levinson