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Sondra Thiederman Ph.D
"Leading Expert on Cross-Cultural Communications"
Sondra Thiederman Expertise: Diversity • Leadership • Sales
Fee Range: $5,000 to $10,000
Location: California
From leadership to sales to managing effectively, Sondraís talks on diversity and bias impact all aspects of business.Perfect for any conference theme, Dr. Sondra Thiedermanís programs provide audiences with what they need to lead more effectively and work more profitably in our increasingly diverse world.

Experience and Skill:
Widely-known as one of the nationís leading experts on diversity issues, Sondra brings 25 years experience as a speaker, trainer, and author to delivering programs that diffuse resistance, motivate, and provide the practical information that todayís audiences demand. Using humor and often unexpected illustrations, she takes a fresh and inspiring perspective that leaves audiences laughing, thinking, and, most important, changing.
What Your Audience Will Learn:
Sondraís various programs will show your audience how to:
  • Lead more effectively by reducing subtle "Guerilla Biases" within themselves and others.
  • Model the behaviors that help create a diversity-friendly and productive workplace.
  • Reduce diversity- and bias-related barriers to successful sales and customer service relationships.
  • Convert diversity-related conflicts into opportunities for increased understanding.
  • Build more productive teams by using the "Magic If" strategy to identify shared values and goals.
Among the scores of clients who have received this information are such leading organizations as Xerox Corporation, Pfizer Pharmaceuticals, Marriott Corporation, Century 21 Real Estate, American Express, The Federal Reserve Bank, Motorola, and AT&T. She has also addressed notable associations including the Arthritis Foundation, the Society for Consumer Affairs Professionals in Business, the American Society of Association Executives, and the American Immigration Lawyers Association. In addition, she has served as consultant to the University of California and the American Cancer Society and has been appointed by Elizabeth Dole to serve on the Diversity Cabinet of the American Red Cross.

Client Feedback:
Here are some typical responses to Sondra Thiedermanís presentations: "Her session provided tools that were immediately applicable in the workplace"; "Wow, I never thought about diversity that way before"; "Her message was down-to-earth, practical, and applicable to the workplace and beyond"; "The most balanced presentation on diversity I have ever seen"; "Refreshing, entertaining, valuable"; "She allowed us to look at ourselves without fear"; "Sondra inspired and educated with a sense of fun."

Sondra Thiederman has a doctorate from UCLA in Cross-Cultural Studies.

Media and Publications:
Sondra has extensive media experience including mention in such national publications as The Wall Street Journal, The New York Times, The Los Angeles Times, and U.S.A Today. She is published in professional journals ranging from Training and Development to Real Estate Today to Association Management, has written on diversity for the web site Monster.com, and is the author of four books including the ground-breaking Making Diversity Work: Seven Steps for Defeating Bias in the Workplace.

Added Value:
Sondra Thiedermanís latest book, Making Diversity Work: Seven Steps for Defeating Bias in the Workplace is available to support and enhance Sondraís message. Contact the bureau for information about substantial bulk discounts.

  • Bias-Free Leadership: Your Competitive Advantage
    One trait possessed by every successful leader is the ability to interpret accurately the needs and motivation styles of team members and colleagues alike. Most of us would find this task fairly easy were it not for the distortion caused by the subtle biases and pre-judgments that afflict all but the most enlightened among us. This practical, entertaining, and motivating program focuses on how subtle biases interfere with the decision-making process and demonstrates how to minimize their impact on our ability to lead effectively.
  • Becoming Bias-Free: Your Workplace Advantage
    The ability to see accurately the people around us is a trait possessed by every successful team member. This task would be fairly easy for most of us were it not for the distortion caused by the subtle biases and pre-judgments that afflict even the nicest of people. This entertaining and practical program focuses on how subtle biases interfere with workplace relationships and demonstrates how to minimize their impact on our ability to form effective teams with people whom we perceive to be different from ourselves.
  • Gateway Events: How to Turn Diversity Tension into Diversity Dialogue
    Moments of tension are inevitable when working with people whom we perceive to be different from ourselves. These moments might include:
    • An incident in which we inadvertently utter an offensive comment.
    • An incident in which someone around us says something offensive to ourselves or a third party.
    • An incident in which we must discuss a diversity-related issue, but are concerned that it will create tension, bad-feeling, or embarrassment.
    As grizzly as these encounters can be, they need not be destructive nor disruptive to our ability to sustain productive relationships. They can, instead, if handled correctly, serve as "Gateway Events" that open to increased understanding and reduced bias. This skill-based presentation supplies participants with techniques for reaching this goal. Illustrated with real-workplace examples and sprinkled with respectful humor, participants will learn exactly what to do when workplace tensions arise.

  • The Business Case for Diversity: It's Right, It's Smart, and It's Profitable
    Making the business case for the presence of diversity in the workforce has not always been an easy task. In fact, many of us have been guilty of over-stating the business value of diversity. Fortunately, it is no longer possible to fall into this trap - diversity has been proven repeatedly to benefit the bottom line of corporations in all parts of the country. This research-based presentation uses real-workplace examples and hard data to show audiences that, yes, diversity is the right thing to do, but it also has a measurable impact on the bottom line.

  • The Impact of Bias on Innovation and Performance: The Problem, the Solution
    This involving presentation uses research and workplace examples to drive home the fact that a diverse workforce is the best source of cutting edge ideas and profit yielding innovation. It then goes on to point out, however, that this innovation does not happen automatically, but requires a bias-free environment in which contributors of all backgrounds feel comfortable speaking up and making their views known. Specific strategies are then provided for minimizing bias and, thereby, increasing the effectiveness of the client's diverse workforce.

  • Resolving the Diversity Paradox: From Differences to Commonalities
    Identifying what we share is one of the key strategies for defeating bias and creating an environment in which we can work productively together. All human beings, despite their differences, share a great deal more than we realize. This sharing results in the formation and identification of what we call "kinship groups." This lively and interactive presentation demonstrates specific strategies for identifying "kinship groups" and moving forward in our efforts to achieve harmonious discrimination-free workplaces.

  • Is 'Guerilla Bias'ô Making War on Your Organization?
    This presentation uses much of the same material employed in Sondra Thiederman's other programs, but, rather than focusing on bias in general, hones in on a particularly insidious brand of prejudice that has thus far gone unrecognized in our workplaces: "Guerilla Bias". This kind of bias bears this peculiar label because, like a guerilla warrior who lies concealed in beautiful jungle foliage, "Guerilla Bias" hides behind good intentions, kind words, and even thoughtful acts. Designed to involve and entertain while providing practical skills for bias reduction, the program uses real workplace anecdotes and humor to motivate change.

  • Bias-Free Sales: Your Key to the Close
    In today's increasingly-diverse marketplace, sales professionals cannot succeed without the ability to interpret accurately the needs of each and every prospect. More than any other single factor, it is biases- inflexible beliefs about a particular category of people-that create the misunderstandings that in turn bring about reduced sales, lost prospects, and, ultimately, diminished profits. Using real workplace examples along with a touch of humor, this presentation provides skills for overcoming the subtle biases that all-too-often interfere with successful sales relationships.

  • Bias-Free Customer Service: The Key to Business Success
    It is common knowledge that bad customer service is responsible for the loss of millions of dollars in business every year. What is less well-known is that it is personal bias -- inflexible beliefs about particular categories of people -- that accounts for much of this loss by creating tension, misunderstanding, and instances of inadvertent offense. Using real customer service examples along with a touch of humor, this interactive presentation provides participants with the tools to identify and defeat the biases that are so damaging to business success.

  • Getting 'Culture Smart' ô: Skills for Doing Business Across Cultural Lines
    Whether domestically or internationally, learning to do business with other cultures is a necessity in today's increasingly diverse marketplace. Sondra Thiederman uses her 25 years experience in the field to provide audiences with entertaining yet practical insights into how to do business across cultural lines. Beginning with resistance-diffusing humor and anecdotes, this presentation then achieves participant "buy in" by briefly surveying the demographics of the cultures and groups with which the specific participants most often do business. The talk then uses real workplace examples to introduce immediately-applicable cross-cultural business skills that are pertinent to the client's needs and marketplace.

  • Culturally-Competent Patient Care: Your Competitive Advantage" (Health Care Industry)
    At no time in the history of this nation has competition for patients been more intense and the diversity of the population more widespread. If we add to this the fact that close-knit immigrant communities provide wonderful opportunities for positive word-of-mouth, it becomes imperative that we take culture and language differences into account when designing our patient care strategies. Intended to entertain and motivate while providing immediately applicable tools, the program provides the skills necessary to deliver optimum care to the patients most often found in the specific client's base population.

  • Bias-Free Health Care Leadership: Managing Effectively in a Diverse Environment" (Health Care Industry)
    One trait possessed by every successful health care leader is the ability to interpret accurately the needs and motivation styles of team members and colleagues alike. Most of us would find this task fairly easy were it not for the distortion caused by the subtle biases and pre-judgments that afflict all but the most enlightened among us. This practical and yet entertaining program focuses on how these subtle biases interfere with the decision-making process and demonstrates how to minimize their impact on our ability to lead effectively in the health care setting.
Client Testimonials:
"Sondraís perspective and her ideas are new and refreshing. That, coupled with her engaging, energetic delivery style, made our conference a success. She did a fabulous job."
-- Jo Jerman Vice-President, Southeast Business Group Merck & Co., Inc.

"When I book a speaker, I always hope he or she will either inspire, educate, or motivate the audience. You did all three and you did it with ease; I couldnít recommend you to others more highly."
-- Deb Curtis, Principal Financial Group

Dissecting Your Biases - The Key to Better Leadership Skills
Bias--The Good Leaderís Fatal Flaw
Reduce Bias by Identifying Shared "Kinship Groups"
Reduce Bias via the "Magic If" Strategy
Mindfulness - The Key to Bias Reduction
Seven Ways to Turn Bias-Related Tension into Gateways for Understanding
The Issue: Triage - How to Decide Which Biases to Treat First

Book: Making Diversity Work Author:Sondra Thiederman
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