Strengthening Leadership Through Training and Development
WI-HER is a globally recognized leader in cutting-edge gender equity and social inclusion (GESI) and diversity, equity, inclusion, and accessibility (DEIA) training that addresses the structural biases and prescriptive beliefs that drive discrimination in various projects and the workplace. WI-HER’s reach includes partnerships with U.S. federal government agencies and the private sector to identify and provide evidence-based solutions to promote GESI and DEIA in project design, project implementation, and the workplace. Our staff includes experts in human resources management, DEIA compliance, and gender-based violence (GBV) prevention and response, including sexual and workplace harassment response. WI-HER’s cadre of professional trainers and facilitators deliver highly effective, culturally competent training in building awareness and developing leadership skills among managers to guide appropriate workplace policies, procedures, and oversight; facilitate sensitive internal processes for responding to harassment or violence; and train staff in compliance.
WI-HER’s groundbreaking iDARE methodology helps us gain a comprehensive understanding of the factors and conditions that perpetuate gaps, barriers, and inequities in various sectors as well as in the workplace. We collaborate with a wide range of stakeholders to design evidence-based, contextually appropriate solutions to achieve, for example, DEIA-responsive outcomes. Using our highly successful iDARE methodology, we work with stakeholders to identify institutional structural gaps and barriers; design, apply, and assess a proposed solution; record the intermediate results; and expand and scale up if the solution works.
Our uniquely tailored curricula and training are designed to deliver the right information at the right time and in the right way. We navigate sensitive topics using a time-tested methodology that overcomes resistance and breaks down barriers among participants. The goal of training based on DEIA concepts is to build awareness about how unconscious bias may affect workplaces, help employees realize their biases, and provide them with the tools they need to address workplace biases, elevate employee morale, and teach employees how to work well together while embracing diverse perspectives. Through our training, we target all employees in an organization and address various topics, including anti-harassment and discrimination, unconscious bias, microaggressions, and implicit biases, using neutral language and cross-cultural communication.
To deliver customized leadership trainings, including training related to DEIA, and GESI, the WI-HER team follows a proven step-by-step process that includes assessing the operating environment of each organization, creating tools, and organizing training workshops. WI-HER’s training approach focuses on sensitization, content delivery, and then steps to check participant knowledge and create space for them to test their knowledge, for example, through the development of action plans for remediation.
Notably, the training we provide equips participants with the knowledge and skills to ensure the workplace is a positive and safe space and that unequal practices and behaviors—on the basis of gender, ethnicity, age, religion, abilities, race, or sexual orientation—are addressed and mitigated.
Examples of our impact
WI-HER and the USIBWC launched a partnership in October 2022 to design and execute a leadership training program to strengthen leadership practices, improve workplace relationships, and enhance staff productivity. This multi-year partnership aims to equip USIBWC with the knowledge and tools required to build a cadre of highly skilled and effective leaders capable of steering the organization through change. The customized leadership training program develops the capacity of multiple managers and supervisors through a series of training sessions.
WI-HER conducted a rapid assessment using quantitative and qualitative research methodologies to inform the training and the training tools. The thematic areas covered in the discussions included: leadership, management, and employee relations; organizational culture and trust; conflict resolution; and gender and racial equity. Based on WI-HER’s rigorous analysis, WI-HER recommended an introductory professional development workshop to launch the program and familiarize the leadership team with our approach to training exercises. The trainings focused on best practices in leadership and included interactive exercises such as role-play, collaborative brainstorming, and group discussions. The results of the first training inform the development of subsequent trainings.
The expected result of WI-HER’s customized leadership training program for the USIBWC is an agile and knowledgeable cadre of highly skilled and effective leaders who will act as change agents in advancing DEIA across the agency.