Kay Formanek is passionate about how inclusive diversity delivers exceptional performance.
Kay Formanek is an inspiring speaker, advisor, author and coach on the transformational power of diversity to organisations and society. Kay collaborates with leading business schools and coaches leaders around the world to tap into diversity of talent and to create a context of inclusion and positive performance. The Neuroscience of Unconscious Bias and Diversity Leadership are the pillars of her work and presentations. Kay is Founder and CEO of Diversity and Performance, a company committed to create new insights and more conscious diversity leaders. She was Managing Director for 25 years at Accenture where she contributed to the agenda of Diversity and Inclusion and Talent Development.
Kay Formanek focuses on the relationship between diversity of talent, inclusive leadership and organizational performance. Her focus has its roots in her upbringing in South Africa and the post-Apartheid transformation under Mandela. Within Accenture Kay Formanek assumed Diversity and Inclusion lead in the Netherlands and was actively involved in creating an inclusive environment for diverse talent within Accenture and its large client base. Kay’s key focus and specialization is on the Neuroscience of Unconscious Bias and how to mitigate Unconscious Bias within an organization and within its leadership ranks. Kay collaborates with INSEAD and other institutions on various diversity initiatives and is a sough speaker and leadership coach on Inclusive Diversity. She has published research, articles and books on this subject.
Inspiring the audience to action is the hallmark of a presentation by Kay Formanek. She seamlessly combines deep content with practical experience to create learning and awareness. And she moves the audience to take action so as to lead inclusive diversity for performance. Kay assumes both Day Chair roles and Plenary Speaker roles.
Kay explores how Unconscious Bias is deeply seated in the way our brain is hard-wired. Drawing on the developments around Neuroscience Kay explores why we all have a natural empathy for our “in-group” and tend to be naturally hostile to our “out-group”. Kay then shares the manner in which we can re-wire our brain and the steps that we can take in society and/or organisations to be more inclusive to all groups.
Kay explains why we are all Unconsciously Biased and why we unintentionally and unwittingly exclude talent, even when we are desirous to have diversity of talent. In an interactive talk, Kay exposes the source of our unconscious bias and reveals the manner in which we can identify our unconscious bias and mitigate the impacts of our unconscious bias in our team setting and within the greater organization.
Kay takes a magnifying glass on the term “diversity”. What do we actually mean by diversity of talent? And how has the meaning of the word changed over the last 50 years and how does our definition of diversity impact the way we lead diversity of talent? Kay then reflects on the most important learnings on the leadership of Diversity in the 20th Century and the key challenges and opportunities that lie ahead.
Kay explains why conscious leaders are so important for realizing inclusive diversity and delivering the benefits of diversity such as improved wellness, engagement, creativity and innovation. Leaders are required to move from the state of being unconsciously unskilled in diversity leadership to the state of
In this presentation, Kay draws on her research collaboration with Dirk Luyten and specialists in the field, on the topic of “Biodiversity – lessons for Organisational Diversity”. Kay has collaborated on a book wherein the scientific lens of Biodiversity is applied to evaluate healthy and unhealthy states of diversity in organisations. What can we learn from nature and by applying a scientific lens, when considering the optimum state of talent diversity within our organization? What is the optimum state of diversity in an organization? What factors create a toxic environment for diversity? What factors needs to be present to restitute healthy diversity. In this inspiring talk, Kay leverages nature and science to create a lens through which one can evaluate the diversity of ones organization and be inspired to create a state of healthy diversity in the organization.
Kay shares her research on how many organisations are unintentionally creating divisions and animosity through their diversity approach within their organisations. By focusing mostly on metrics, quota’s and ring-fencing certain talent, they create a state of “divided diversity”. Kay shares the five characteristics of organisations practicing “united diversity” and shares the practical actions that leaders can take to stimulate “united diversity” within their organisations.
This speech is drawn from the TEDxTalk “United Diversity” that Kay delivered with Dirk Luyten at INSEAD in 2018.
Kay delivers sets out the business case for business and society to plug into the missed talent pool of women in STEM. She sets out with razor sharpness the reason that women either do not enter STEM careers and then highlights the reasons why women also leave STEM Careers. And Kay creates a compelling call to action for leaders to change the dynamics of the talent pool in STEM and sets out what is required to tap into this critical pool of talent.