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Noted for her ability to take complex diversity concepts and distill them into practical applicable strategies, Lenora Billings-Harris weaves inclusion, leadership, management and African-American history into the fabric of her speeches. The Society of Human Resource Management have named her one of their 100 global Thought Leaders on Diversity and Inclusion, and Diversity Woman Magazine chose her as one of the top 20 most influential diversity leaders in the USA.

Billings-Harris' expertise is much sought after around the world, having given presentations in more than 20 countries on 6 continents. Two years after the fall of the Soviet Union, she was invited to travel to Russia and Ukraine as part of the People to People International delegation, helping educators and business leaders make the transition to a new era of global competition. Recent travels have included conferences in Cape Town, South Africa and Tel Aviv, Israel.

Amongst Billings-Harris' published work is her book The Diversity Advantage: A Guide to Making Diversity Work and (as co-author) TRAILBLAZERS: How Top Business Leaders are Accelerating Results through Inclusion and Diversity. She is a member of the adjunct faculty of the business schools of Averett University and the University of North Carolina-Greensboro. She is devoted to community service, with a focus on the eradication of bias and educating leaders about the impact of inclusion.

Billings-Harris holds Certified Professional Speaker status (something only 5% of professional speakers attain), has been president of the National Speakers Association and in 2014 was president of the Global Speakers Federation.

Full Profile

Diversity and Inclusion is a full-time focus, not just one topic among many for Lenora Billings-
Harris. Her ability to transform multifaceted diversity and inclusion concepts into immediately
applicable “how to’s” have enabled her to help organizations intentionally create and sustain
inclusive work cultures that challenge each individual to accelerate their efforts toward achieving maximum results. Whether through keynotes, workshops, or organizational consulting, Lenora partners with clients to help them build effective relationships that leverage diversity in order to increase inclusion, innovation, employee engagement, customer satisfaction and bottom-line results.

Billings-Harris is a recognized authority. She was been included as one of 100 Global Thought
Leaders on Diversity and Inclusion in 2011 by The Society of Human Resource Management
(SHRM), and was named by Diversity Woman Magazine as a top-twenty influential diversity leader
in the US. Her award winning diversity leadership research is recognized in academic journals
internationally. Lenora was selected to serve as part of the People to People International delegation to Russia and Ukraine two years after the Soviet Union fell, in order to help educators and business leaders prepare their organizations for global competition. Most recently she keynoted at Inclusion Conferences in Cape Town, South Africa and in Tel Aviv, Israel to share experiences and best practices with leaders within the business, government and NGO communities.

Billings-Harris co-authored TRAILBLAZERS: How Top Business Leaders are Accelerating Results
through Inclusion and Diversity, and is the author of The Diversity Advantage: A Guide to Making
Diversity Work, 3rd on the adjunct faculty of the business schools of Averett University and the University of North Carolina-Greensboro. She has served on numerous community boards of directors, and served as board president of Win-Win Resolutions, Inc. All of her community service focuses on eradicating bias as well as empowering leaders through understanding the impact of inclusion.

Lenora is a Certified Professional Speaker (CSP), a past president of the National Speakers
Association, and will be the 2014 president of the Global Speakers Federation. She has presented to audiences in over twenty countries on six continents.


Lenora Billings-Harris Speaker Videos Back to top

Lenora Billings-Harris speaking


Lenora Billings-Harris explains what it is that she does to help companies and organizations improve their sensitivity to and management of diversity. She says, “It was about giving people an opportunity to have a safe place to talk about a difficult topic. And so what I do today is I help organizations create that space so that they can appreciate the diversity of their employees and their customers and make it a competitive advantage."

She outlines the reasons her diversity presentations are so much in demand: “Big business, in fact any business, doesn't do diversity work simply because it's the right thing to do, they do it because it's going to have bottom-line impact, and regardless of whether you are actually doing work internationally or you're only doing work in your community, you could be a non-profit organization working in your community, the point is there are no communities that are not diverse, because, once again, diversity is all of us, not just certain groups."

Pointing out the inherent advantages of encouraging diversity, she explains, “The more we understand the groups that we serve, and the groups that we interact with, the more effective our bottom line is, whether it's bottom line dollars, or bottom line from a public relations point of view, or from a customer services point of view."

Workshop Speech Discussing the Millennial Generation



Speeches / Speaking Engagements Back to top


Billings-Harris’ presentations are all about inclusion; she does not view diversity as a hurdle to be overcome but as a positive force that can be utilized to gain competitive advantage. Setting out her vision of Transformational Diversity Management Principles, she shows how inclusiveness and multiculturalism, properly managed, can not only make for a happier workplace but also significantly improve the bottom line.

Billings-Harris offers presentations on many different types of inclusion; she gives valuable insights into the management of generational differences in the workplace, cross gender communication and ending cultural collisions by the use of effective communication. Her energetic, fun, practical and thought-provoking programs are perhaps best described by the title of one of her own presentations, Turning Barriers into Bridges.

Beyond Diversity Rhetoric: Cultural Intelligence for Our Global Village

Are you ready to go beyond multicultural awareness? Is your organization ready to create a respectful, engaging environment that utilizes is diversity to gain a competitive advantage? If so, this program is for you.

By participating in this session, you will be able to:

      1. Explore Transformational Diversity Management based on the best practices of award winning companies.

      2. Explore ways to evaluate your organization’s current processes to identify gaps and celebrate successes.

      3. Discover techniques that engage Middle Management and empower employees around D&I outcomes.

This presentation offers participants an opportunity to explore the Transformational Diversity Management Principles™ based on the work of Lenora Billings-Harris, CSP in her book TRAILBLAZERS: How Top Business Leaders are Accelerating Results through Inclusion and Diversity, and her latest research with the Bryan School of Business, University of North Carolina-Greensboro.

Join Lenora for this informative session exploring inclusiveness and multiculturalism from a business bottom-line point of view. You will leave with actionable tactics and strategies that drive diversity success.

Maximizing the Positive Potential of Generational Differences in Your Workplace

There are four generations , and soon to be five, that work side by side in today’s organizations. Each with its own culture. What complicates generational diversity is what complicates all diversity; all of the other layers that make up a human being coexisting with generational differences. These groups have shared memories, and experiences, and social norms that inform their behavior on the job and elsewhere.

Join Lenora Billings-Harris, CSP in a highly interactive session to not only explore the generational differences, but to identify ways to inspire each generation to deliver their best work. You will discover how best to appreciate instead of criticize the differences. Lenora will share best practices from award winning companies she highlighted in her book, TRAILBLAZERS: How Top Business Leaders are Accelerating Results through Inclusion and Diversity. You will walk away from this session with:

      1. Actionable tactics to engage each generational team member to perform at their best level.

      2. Methods to inform leaders of the powerhouse of mixed generational talent they have and how to inspire across generations.

      3. A power technique for giving feedback that keeps the relationship intact when cultural collisions occur.

From Adversaries to Allies: 7 Keys to High Performance Cross-Gender Communication

This fun yet practical presentation will accelerate your communication skills across gender. You will discover ways to reframe your cross- gender communication for highly effective results. This insightful session will help you recognize male/female communication differences without judging them. You will discover your own communication strengths and determine how to build upon them.

      As a result of applying the principles and skills discussed, you will be able to:

      • Identify the major male and female communication tendencies

      • Explore the 5 habits that hinder effective cross-gender communication

      • Manage gender conflict more effectively The focus of this session is on communication solutions not gender bashing, thus both men and women can enhance their effectiveness.

S.T.O.P. - How to Diminish Cultural Collisions with Effective Feedback

There are barriers, booby traps, and blocked roadways on our journey toward achieving cultural competence. What do you say to the co-worker who always wants to touch your locks or braids? How do you tell your manager to stop giving you a high-five every time he agrees with something you say? How do you get your Baby Boomer colleague to stop reminding you that you are too young to know...?

The biggest barrier to giving feedback in these situations is the fear most people have when it comes to speaking up in a respectful way to encourage others to stop insensitive or inappropriate behavior.

One of the major reasons people do not speak up more often when they experience inappropriate behavior is because they do not know how to speak up when they have to interact with the offender on a regular basis. If the offender is your manager speaking up may seem too dangerous. If the offender is a colleague in your department, well it is easier just to be silent. Or is it? That silence perpetuates inappropriate behavior. Lenora’s four-step process called S.T.O.P. for giving feedback is easy to understand and is produces successfully results. Join her for this highly interactive session to learn a technique that can be used at work, home, and even with children.

5 Secrets Unveiled: How Top Business Leaders use Diversity and Inclusion to Accelerate Bottom-Line Results

Lenora Billings-Harris, CSP

Uncover critical strategies and successes related to world class diversity and inclusion management used by award-winning organizations such as Dell, Sodexo, IBM, the Coca-Cola Company and others. Lenora Billings-Harris, co-author of TRAILBLAZERS: How Top Business Leaders are Accelerating Results through Inclusion and Diversity will lead you through the key components of measurable success

related to:

      • CEO Commitment

      • Chief Diversity Officer Competencies

      • Making Diversity Education Effective

      • Engaging Middle Managers

      • Metrics & Scorecards that Contribute to Business Success

You will leave this session with clear, specific strategies and tactics that can help make your organization's diversity and inclusion plan world class.

To encourage the most involvement you will work in small groups, as well as contribute to the large group via the use of innovative sharing techniques. This session is learner-directed, allowing the highest possible opportunity for self-discovery.

Bonus

Approximately 30 days after the session, you will be invited to participate in a 60-minute group coaching session with Lenora.

Turning Barriers into Bridges TM

As the dramatic shift to a highly diverse workplace continues, organizations know they must help employees understand, accept, and capitalize on differences as well as similarities. They know the cultural backgrounds and experiences of diverse employees and clients can enrich the organization, making it more innovative and competitive.

Enhancing your inclusion and communication skills enables you to work more effectively internally and in the community. The added benefit is the skills learned can be used professionally and personally thus reducing stress and enhancing positive interactions.

This highly interactive, non-judgmental and fun program provides an opportunity for participants to discover their own level of knowledge and understanding of people different from themselves, and then apply the principles of inclusion to build relationships. By exploring the biases of our society's "isms" and prejudices that impede productivity, participants will be better equipped to turn barriers into bridges and focus on performance when they return to their organization.

      Learning Objectives: As a result of attending this session, participants will be able to:

      • Improve their awareness of the impact of their behavior on others

      • Increase acceptance and value differences

      • Limit the influence of stereotypes on their personal actions

      • Identify the four cornerstones of diversity development

      • Identify effective inclusion strategies for individuals and organizations

      • Become a totally responsible professional

      • Use the STOP feedback technique

      • Develop a Team Code of Conduct



Lenora Billings-Harris Speaker Testimonials Back to top

"This approach has been very effective in helping to keep our team members focused on diversity, in the broadest sense, not just gender and race issues."
J. Betts
Director- Employee Relations
Domino′s Pizza

"The information provided was very practical and easy-to-implement immediatelyówhat a pleasant change!
B. Doran
Director- Human Resources
American Heart Association

"Lenora Billings-Harris, is an expert in the field of diversity. This innovative approach does a great job of elevating the awareness of our employees to the changes taking place, not only in our workplace, but in ′real life′ as well."
J. Hine, Jr.
President
John Hine Chrysler-Plymouth

"Clearly the employees appreciated the content of the program as well as your character and credibility as a speaker. It was also clear from the animated interaction of the participants, as well as the way many of them lingered to speak with you after class, that you touched many our staff in a personal way."
P. Bailey
Vice President
WESCOM Credit Union

"Thank you for your contribution to the New Horizons program. You have had a tremendous impact upon the success of our lecture series."
Dan Nygaard
Program Manager
Seattle Management Association

"The most frequent comments made were, ′how soon can she return to give us more information′, ′ the information was pertinent and informative′, ′thank you for bringing us a truly important workshop with an excellent presenter′."
Jody Leinenwever
Director of Human Resources
Pendergast School District #92

American Heart Association
American Society of Military Comptrollers
Arizona State University
AT&T
ATHENA Foundation
Blue Cross/Blue Shield of Arizona
Brookstone College
Bureau of Land Management
Carlson Marketing Group
Chrysler Corporation
City of Farmington
City of Phoenix
City of Seattle
City of Tempe
Clemson University
Deer Valley High School
Domino′s Pizza
Ford
Fort Valley State University
General Motors
Hewlett Packard
Institute of Electronic and Electrical Engineers
Mitsubishi
Motorola
National Assoc. of Temp. Staff Services
National Education Assoc.
Nissan
Pendergrast School District
Phoenix College
Promedia Workplace Learning
The Ritz-Carlton
Toyota
US Army Staff College
US Department of Agriculture
US Postal Service
Volvo
Wescom Credit Union
Lenora Billings-Harris, CSP . . . Helping organizations put the people puzzle together to improve productivity, performance and profits.




* Please note that while this speaker’s specific speaking fee falls within the range posted above (for Continental U.S. based events), fees are subject to change. For current fee information or international event fees (which are generally 50-75% more than U.S based event fees), please contact us.

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"This approach has been very effective in helping to keep our team members focused on diversity, in the broadest sense, not just gender and race issues."
J. Betts
Director- Employee Relations
Domino′s Pizza

"The information provided was very practical and easy-to-implement immediatelyówhat a pleasant change!
B. Doran
Director- Human Resources
American Heart Association

"Lenora Billings-Harris, is an expert in the field of diversity. This innovative approach does a great job of elevating the awareness of our employees to the changes taking place, not only in our workplace, but in ′real life′ as well."
J. Hine, Jr.
President
John Hine Chrysler-Plymouth

"Clearly the employees appreciated the content of the program as well as your character and credibility as a speaker. It was also clear from the animated interaction of the participants, as well as the way many of them lingered to speak with you after class, that you touched many our staff in a personal way."
P. Bailey
Vice President
WESCOM Credit Union

"Thank you for your contribution to the New Horizons program. You have had a tremendous impact upon the success of our lecture series."
Dan Nygaard
Program Manager
Seattle Management Association

"The most frequent comments made were, ′how soon can she return to give us more information′, ′ the information was pertinent and informative′, ′thank you for bringing us a truly important workshop with an excellent presenter′."
Jody Leinenwever
Director of Human Resources
Pendergast School District #92

American Heart Association
American Society of Military Comptrollers
Arizona State University
AT&T
ATHENA Foundation
Blue Cross/Blue Shield of Arizona
Brookstone College
Bureau of Land Management
Carlson Marketing Group
Chrysler Corporation
City of Farmington
City of Phoenix
City of Seattle
City of Tempe
Clemson University
Deer Valley High School
Domino′s Pizza
Ford
Fort Valley State University
General Motors
Hewlett Packard
Institute of Electronic and Electrical Engineers
Mitsubishi
Motorola
National Assoc. of Temp. Staff Services
National Education Assoc.
Nissan
Pendergrast School District
Phoenix College
Promedia Workplace Learning
The Ritz-Carlton
Toyota
US Army Staff College
US Department of Agriculture
US Postal Service
Volvo
Wescom Credit Union
Lenora Billings-Harris, CSP . . . Helping organizations put the people puzzle together to improve productivity, performance and profits.


    The Diversity Advantage
    A Guide to Making Diversity Work

    Think of a leader/manager in your life who really motivated you to be the best you could be. What attributes or characteristics describe him or her? What habits did he or she have that worked for you? Over the past two years, I have asked hundreds of leaders that question.

    The specific word, diversity, was rarely used when people described their best, favorite, or most effective manager. However, fairness, respect, objectiveness, and listening recurred frequently. These attributes describe an effective manager and leader. The key within a diverse environment is to be able to practice these behaviors with all contributors, rather than only employees with whom you are most comfortable.

    Order Here


Beyond Diversity Rhetoric: Cultural Intelligence for Our Global Village

Are you ready to go beyond multicultural awareness? Is your organization ready to create a respectful, engaging environment that utilizes is diversity to gain a competitive advantage? If so, this program is for you.

By participating in this session, you will be able to:

      1. Explore Transformational Diversity Management based on the best practices of award winning companies.

      2. Explore ways to evaluate your organization’s current processes to identify gaps and celebrate successes.

      3. Discover techniques that engage Middle Management and empower employees around D&I outcomes.

This presentation offers participants an opportunity to explore the Transformational Diversity Management Principles™ based on the work of Lenora Billings-Harris, CSP in her book TRAILBLAZERS: How Top Business Leaders are Accelerating Results through Inclusion and Diversity, and her latest research with the Bryan School of Business, University of North Carolina-Greensboro.

Join Lenora for this informative session exploring inclusiveness and multiculturalism from a business bottom-line point of view. You will leave with actionable tactics and strategies that drive diversity success.

Maximizing the Positive Potential of Generational Differences in Your Workplace

There are four generations , and soon to be five, that work side by side in today’s organizations. Each with its own culture. What complicates generational diversity is what complicates all diversity; all of the other layers that make up a human being coexisting with generational differences. These groups have shared memories, and experiences, and social norms that inform their behavior on the job and elsewhere.

Join Lenora Billings-Harris, CSP in a highly interactive session to not only explore the generational differences, but to identify ways to inspire each generation to deliver their best work. You will discover how best to appreciate instead of criticize the differences. Lenora will share best practices from award winning companies she highlighted in her book, TRAILBLAZERS: How Top Business Leaders are Accelerating Results through Inclusion and Diversity. You will walk away from this session with:

      1. Actionable tactics to engage each generational team member to perform at their best level.

      2. Methods to inform leaders of the powerhouse of mixed generational talent they have and how to inspire across generations.

      3. A power technique for giving feedback that keeps the relationship intact when cultural collisions occur.

From Adversaries to Allies: 7 Keys to High Performance Cross-Gender Communication

This fun yet practical presentation will accelerate your communication skills across gender. You will discover ways to reframe your cross- gender communication for highly effective results. This insightful session will help you recognize male/female communication differences without judging them. You will discover your own communication strengths and determine how to build upon them.

      As a result of applying the principles and skills discussed, you will be able to:

      • Identify the major male and female communication tendencies

      • Explore the 5 habits that hinder effective cross-gender communication

      • Manage gender conflict more effectively The focus of this session is on communication solutions not gender bashing, thus both men and women can enhance their effectiveness.

S.T.O.P. - How to Diminish Cultural Collisions with Effective Feedback

There are barriers, booby traps, and blocked roadways on our journey toward achieving cultural competence. What do you say to the co-worker who always wants to touch your locks or braids? How do you tell your manager to stop giving you a high-five every time he agrees with something you say? How do you get your Baby Boomer colleague to stop reminding you that you are too young to know...?

The biggest barrier to giving feedback in these situations is the fear most people have when it comes to speaking up in a respectful way to encourage others to stop insensitive or inappropriate behavior.

One of the major reasons people do not speak up more often when they experience inappropriate behavior is because they do not know how to speak up when they have to interact with the offender on a regular basis. If the offender is your manager speaking up may seem too dangerous. If the offender is a colleague in your department, well it is easier just to be silent. Or is it? That silence perpetuates inappropriate behavior. Lenora’s four-step process called S.T.O.P. for giving feedback is easy to understand and is produces successfully results. Join her for this highly interactive session to learn a technique that can be used at work, home, and even with children.

5 Secrets Unveiled: How Top Business Leaders use Diversity and Inclusion to Accelerate Bottom-Line Results

Lenora Billings-Harris, CSP

Uncover critical strategies and successes related to world class diversity and inclusion management used by award-winning organizations such as Dell, Sodexo, IBM, the Coca-Cola Company and others. Lenora Billings-Harris, co-author of TRAILBLAZERS: How Top Business Leaders are Accelerating Results through Inclusion and Diversity will lead you through the key components of measurable success

related to:

      • CEO Commitment

      • Chief Diversity Officer Competencies

      • Making Diversity Education Effective

      • Engaging Middle Managers

      • Metrics & Scorecards that Contribute to Business Success

You will leave this session with clear, specific strategies and tactics that can help make your organization's diversity and inclusion plan world class.

To encourage the most involvement you will work in small groups, as well as contribute to the large group via the use of innovative sharing techniques. This session is learner-directed, allowing the highest possible opportunity for self-discovery.

Bonus

Approximately 30 days after the session, you will be invited to participate in a 60-minute group coaching session with Lenora.

Turning Barriers into Bridges TM

As the dramatic shift to a highly diverse workplace continues, organizations know they must help employees understand, accept, and capitalize on differences as well as similarities. They know the cultural backgrounds and experiences of diverse employees and clients can enrich the organization, making it more innovative and competitive.

Enhancing your inclusion and communication skills enables you to work more effectively internally and in the community. The added benefit is the skills learned can be used professionally and personally thus reducing stress and enhancing positive interactions.

This highly interactive, non-judgmental and fun program provides an opportunity for participants to discover their own level of knowledge and understanding of people different from themselves, and then apply the principles of inclusion to build relationships. By exploring the biases of our society's "isms" and prejudices that impede productivity, participants will be better equipped to turn barriers into bridges and focus on performance when they return to their organization.

      Learning Objectives: As a result of attending this session, participants will be able to:

      • Improve their awareness of the impact of their behavior on others

      • Increase acceptance and value differences

      • Limit the influence of stereotypes on their personal actions

      • Identify the four cornerstones of diversity development

      • Identify effective inclusion strategies for individuals and organizations

      • Become a totally responsible professional

      • Use the STOP feedback technique

      • Develop a Team Code of Conduct



Lenora Billings-Harris speaking


Lenora Billings-Harris explains what it is that she does to help companies and organizations improve their sensitivity to and management of diversity. She says, “It was about giving people an opportunity to have a safe place to talk about a difficult topic. And so what I do today is I help organizations create that space so that they can appreciate the diversity of their employees and their customers and make it a competitive advantage."

She outlines the reasons her diversity presentations are so much in demand: “Big business, in fact any business, doesn't do diversity work simply because it's the right thing to do, they do it because it's going to have bottom-line impact, and regardless of whether you are actually doing work internationally or you're only doing work in your community, you could be a non-profit organization working in your community, the point is there are no communities that are not diverse, because, once again, diversity is all of us, not just certain groups."

Pointing out the inherent advantages of encouraging diversity, she explains, “The more we understand the groups that we serve, and the groups that we interact with, the more effective our bottom line is, whether it's bottom line dollars, or bottom line from a public relations point of view, or from a customer services point of view."

Workshop Speech Discussing the Millennial Generation