Treat gender equity like the business priority it is.

Gender stereotypes are tenacious. We can create a new story that works for everyone.

Alongside my consulting partner, Jessica Nordhaus, I provide businesses research-driven consulting and training to help build equitable workplace cultures.

We believe that by examining gender roles in the workplace (and disrupting the status quo where necessary), we can create a new story for women and men at work; one where there is equal access to leadership, advancement, and equitable pay.

Ways we work with you:

Consulting with your workplace leaders and change makers.

Let’s talk about your gender inclusion priorities and where we can make the most impact – in the short-term and long-term.

Facilitating the Business Peer Exchange

The Business Peer Exchange (BPE) is a group of VT employers who come together monthly to discuss ways to progress gender inclusion and equity in their workplaces.

Providing training workshops and presentations for your workplace or event.

Looking for a gender equity workshop? You can read our workshop offerings below.

We decide together!

Let’s set up a strategy call to decide what makes the most sense for you.

The Business Peer Exchange (BPE)

In 2015, with support from the Vermont Women’s Fund, we helped launch Change The Story’s Business Peer Exchange, a group of employers, business and nonprofit leaders and subject matter experts committed to a year-long series of exploratory conversations about topics around gender equity and best business practices. BPE has engaged 30+ employers and over 250 people in this conversation.

Learn more at changethestoryvt.org/bpe.

Want to join a meeting? Email us!

“We have loved being part of Change the Story’s Business Peer Exchange and it has really helped us move forward equity conversations and policies organizationally. We have a newly formed Equity Committee that is planning multiple staff trainings around sexual harassment, implicit bias and racism for 2018. We’re also working on the language in our job descriptions and hiring processes, doing a wage and benefit assessment for all employees, working on engaging our board in these discussions, and lots more. We have a staff lunch planned for the Change The Story Conversation Cards toolkit and I’m excited to try it out! We had a goal of getting all of our managers to at least one BPE and I think we’re pretty close to achieving that goal.

Our Approach

Our five-pronged approach includes:

  1. Disarm: create an atmosphere of non-judgment; recognize discomfort; stop “should-ing” yourself!
  2. Relate: share stories about our gender equity journeys; make the topic relatable and accessible.
  3. Empower: create space for community; “I see value in you. You can be influential.”
  4. Inform: use local, national and global research and best practices to keep your team up-to-date and cutting edge.
  5. Engage: provide tools and opportunities for examining personal and organizational roles in this work.

What stage does your workplace fall in?

The Wakening Workplace

Let’s call this the collective awakening phase. Your intentions are good – you want to raise awareness of gender dynamics in your workplace.
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The Proactive Workplace

Things are going well and you want to keep it that way. People are included (and this isn’t just a “feeling” – you can back it up with data), you have women represented across all-levels (for the most part). You want to be keep the conversation going.

The Diligent Workplace

You’re integrating and maintaining best practices. Conversations are happening and your workplace is an example of what inclusion really looks like. That said, you know you have to remain diligent and focused to keep this up.

Workshops & Presentations

Raising Awareness Workshops

An Introduction to Gender Bias

We deliver a supportive, research-based and solutions-oriented introductory training on understanding our unconscious gender bias. Using Change The Story’s Conversation Cards, we help participants identify their own individual implicit biases and their stealthy subtleties. We highlight how they perpetuate gender stereotypes and contribute to gendered gaps in pay, leadership and advancement. Then as a group, we begin to create new ideas for raising awareness and elevating interactions in the workplace, keeping in mind both our good intent and biased approach.

We Signed the Vermont Equal Pay Compact…Now What?

Signing the Vermont Commission on Women’s Equal Pay Compact is a great first step toward closing the gender wage gap in Vermont. But if you’re wondering what your next step is, this workshop is for you. We will start with a brief introduction of unconscious gender bias, then share ideas and tangible best practices for you to consider as next steps in your commitment. Content can be tailored to your organization’s needs; it can cover an introduction to compensation philosophy and planning, affirmative recruitment and retention, or connecting women to careers at all stages of life  Participants will leave with a clarified goal and action step to get started.

Male Champions for Change – Part 1 (Facilitated by a Male Trainer)

This workshop is designed for men and provides an all-male space to talk about how we as a culture define masculinity, the gender messages boys and men receive, and how these play out in the workplace. Participants will leave the conversation with introductory resources, tools, and ideas on how they can stand beside women, not just as allies but as change makers.

Being Proactive Workshops

Combat Gender Bias

Consider this Part 2 to ‘An Introduction to Gender Bias.’ In this encouraging workshop, we dive deeper into our implicit gender biases and unpack the gender norms that exist in your workplace. Using Change The Story Conversation Cards and other tools, participants will leave with concrete ways to curb bias from holding women back and know how they can personally show up differently at work in support of this goal.

Kickstart your Gender Equality Plan

This workshop is designed for senior leaders or a smaller group (5-10) of workplace champions. In this workshop, we clarify your vision for a gender equal workplace and get specific on the what, how, and when of your aim for change. We uncover how gender equality integrates into your current Inclusion & Diversity planning and goals. Together, we identify the gaps and opportunities for shared learning, and the tools you’ll need to move forward. After creating a list of desired outcomes, we will help you develop a plan for action and accountability.

Male Champions for Change – Part 2 (Facilitated by a Male Trainer)

In this sequel, we review what we learned in Part 1 and dive further into creating personalized steps for engaging in further dialogue and action at work. Participants will also take away strategies on how they can continue to normalize this conversation with their male peers and invite others into the dialogue to make change.

Cultural Consultation

Think about it: When it comes to diversity and inclusion, we tend to focus on the diversity part first. But what happens when women are in new roles in your organization? Do they stay? Not if they don’t feel supported. The goal of this consultation is to take an initial look at gender inclusivity as it relates to your organization’s internal culture and external brand. This includes things like internal communication language, signage and symbols, inclusion and diversity statement, learning and development planning, job descriptions and postings, honors,recognitions and more!

There is an opportunity to expand upon this initial consultation to identify short-term (0-18 month) and long-term (19-36 month) strategies for improving the internal employee experience as well as the external brand of your organization. We can also help you begin developing a change management plan to communicate the intent and resources behind the planned changes.

Integrating & Maintaining Workshops

“Wait, what did you say?” Responding to Everyday Sexism

Whether you experience a sexist act or comment as a recipient or an observer, it can be tough to know what to say in the moment. Everyday sexism includes things like: insults disguised as jokes, devaluing women’s views or voice, role stereotyping, fixation on physical appearance, assumptions that caring and careers don’t mix, and unwarranted gender labeling. This workshop is a way to begin a constructive conversation about what is and what isn’t appropriate at your workplace,how to create ready responses for those sticky situations, and how your organization can set an inclusive, empathic and welcoming tone.

What Message Are You Sending?

In this workshop, we dive into how your external presence may be helping or hindering your gender inclusivity efforts to connect with a diverse range of current and future employees, consumers, and partners. Have you considered gender-balance in language, imagery and tone in your brand? By elevating the portrayal and visibility of women in messages and marketing, we challenge stereotypes and historical imbalances of gender.

Keeping your Eye on the Gender Equality Road

Consider this a tune up. This is designed for senior leaders or a smaller group (5-10) of workplace champions. It’s very easy to think “We’re good now, right?” This is exactly when we can begin slipping back into old habits and practices that perpetuate gender stereotypes. Or maybe your organization has grown and your leadership team has changed. We will lead a focused conversation to help you identify areas that need your focus and areas you can celebrate!

Why Aren’t They Applying? Affirmative Recruitment through Job Descriptions and Job Postings

Would you like to see more women in your workplace? Having trouble meeting your gender diversity goals? Maybe your recruitment language needs a little tune-up. Research shows that the way we respond to job postings and job descriptions may be informed by our gender. In this workshop we will cover what affirmative recruitment is (and isn’t), help you go through your recruitment tools with a fine-tooth comb and leave you with tools for staying the course toward a gender diverse workplace.

Compensation Planning with an Eye on Equity (Facilitated in partnership with a Compensation Specialist)

This workshop is a focused deep dive into the power of compensation to create an equitable and irresistible company. Our approach helps you identify the compensation philosophy that aligns with your organization’s values and becomes the foundation of a robust compensation plan. We will walk you through steps to conduct a basic pay equity analysis, discuss the elements of a truly merit-based compensation structure, and set you on the road to irresistibility!

Have Questions?