Allyship: Using Peer Networks and Social Learning to Build an Inclusive Workplace

Diversity, equity and inclusion (DE&I) is a business imperative for most employers, Brandon Hall Group research shows. But many organizations struggle to embed the principles across the enterprise.

Building diverse workplaces and inclusive company cultures requires a combination of executive alignment and people development, starting with individual contributors.

Allyship — when people in an organization actively promote the culture of inclusion – can greatly accelerate creation of a DE&I culture. 

On Sept. 13, NovoEd and Brandon Hall Group offer a webinar that explores how HR and learning organizations can use allyship and collaborative learning technology to align employees around complex goals. The session will demonstrate how to build networks of allyship to develop people into the types of employees who can embody and enact a company’s vision and culture.

An ally is someone who is not a member of an underrepresented group but who takes action to support that group. Allies utilize their credibility to create a workplace where everyone can thrive. For example:

  • White male executives can be allies to women of color who want to reach the same position in their careers. 
  • Cisgender employees can be allies to colleagues from the LGBTQI+ community. 
  • People from privileged backgrounds can be allies to those who lack the same economic stability and opportunities. 

This webinar focuses on inclusive leadership and allyship programs as deployed at Visa, General Mills and Walgreens. These programs are examples of how to develop and deploy complex learning initiatives that change the effectiveness of people and transform cultures by creating internal alignment at scale.

Dr. Kristin Lee, Virtual Learning Manager at NextUpAmberly Santana, Senior Learning Experience Designer at NovoEd, and Claude Werder, Senior VP and Principal HCM Analyst for Brandon Hall Group, will provide insights and research to unlock the secrets for increasing allyship and cultivating inclusive leaders. Attendees will leave the webinar with:

  • Models and approaches to building inclusive leaders and allies
  • How to improve the impact of your DE&I initiatives
  • Best practices and decision-making strategies for balancing learning science, psychological safety, learner engagement strategies and your organization’s culture

Please join us Tuesday, Sept. 13, at 1 pm ET. If you aren’t sure you can make it, register anyway and we will provide a recording and the webinar slides to use when it suits you.

-Claude Werder, Senior VP and Principal HCM Analyst, Brandon Hall Group

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Mike Cooke

Chief Executive Officer of Brandon Hall Group Mike Cooke Prior to joining Brandon Hall Group, Mike Cooke was the Chief Executive Officer and co-founder of AC Growth. Mike held leadership and executive positions for the majority of his career, at which he was responsible for steering sales and marketing teams to drive results and profitability. His background includes more than 15 years of experience in sales, marketing, management, and operations in the research, consulting, software and technology industries. Mike has extensive experience in sales, marketing and management having worked for several early high-growth emerging businesses and has implemented technology systems to support various critical sales, finance, marketing and client service functions. He is especially skilled in organizing the sales and service strategy to fully support a company’s growth strategy. The concept of growth was an absolute to Mike and a motivator in starting AC Growth, in order to help organizations achieve research driven results. Most recently, Mike was the VP and General Manager of Field Operations at Bersin & Associates, a global analyst and consulting services firm focused on all areas of enterprise learning, talent management and talent acquisition. Tasked with leading the company’s global expansion, Mike led all sales operations worldwide. During Mike’s tenure, the company has grown into a multi-national firm, conducting business in over 45 countries with over 4,500 multi-national organizations. Mike started his career at MicroVideo Learning Systems in 1992, eventually holding a senior management position and leading all corporate sales before founding Dynamic Minds. Mike was CEO and Co-Founder of Dynamic Minds, a custom developer of software programs, working with clients like Goldman Sachs, Prentice Hall, McGraw Hill and Merrill Lynch. Also, Mike worked for Oddcast, a leading provider of customer experience and marketing solutions, where he held a senior management position leading the company into new markets across various industries. Mike also serves on the Advisory Board for Carbon Solutions America, an independent sustainability consulting and carbon management firm that specializes in the design and implementation of greenhouse reduction and sustainability plans as well as managing the generation of carbon and renewal energy and energy efficiency credits. Mike attended University of Phoenix, studying Business Administration and Finance. He has also completed executive training at the Chicago Graduate School of Business in Chicago, IL.