Walmart commissioned GDP to deliver a programme of D&I interventions, including gender equity events, inclusive leadership and unconscious bias training to stimulate discussion on the impact of bias on developing balanced senior teams.
The sessions focused on 500 business leaders over four years with delegates including the CEO and EVPs from the UK, US, Mexico, San Salvador, Honduras, Guatemala, Costa Rica, Nicaragua, Brazil and Argentina among other countries.
An audit gathered data on underrepresented groups in relation to career paths, appraisal and promotions to facilitate exploration of current barriers. These were found to be a combination of attitudinal, perceptual and structural.
The programme included the launch of the Walmart Global Women’s Symposium, unconscious bias training for global HRDs, inclusive leadership accountability events, consultancy support to the Equity Council and executive coaching.
It provided leaders with incentives to consider their behaviours and influence as role models, to decrease bias, increase gender bilingualism and more inclusive leadership.
Cory Guajardo Elizondo, Walmart’s Group HR Director at the time, said, “Farrah’s conference was excellent. She …. spoke to our mind, to our hearts, and to our hands.”
WalMart’s UK subsidiary, Asda, then appointed GDP initially for a series of unconscious bias workshops to ‘upskill’ senior leaders, focusing on gender balance and the potential effect of unconscious bias can have on decision making in recruitment and succession planning.
The workshops prompted the development of the ‘Ethnicity Strategy 2014’ and a leadership program aimed at women and ethnic minority leaders.
The program developed encouraged BAME colleagues to focus on challenges relevant to their performance and progression in the workplace, covering topics such as authentic leadership, resilience, personal impact and networking.