Our main stage features expert insights and inspiration including:

ERG Expert “Triage” Session 

What’s the biggest challenge facing your ERG or DEI Council this year? We’re gathering hot topics and critical challenges from attendees, and our panel of Diversity Impact Award (DIA) winners and ERG experts will use their decades of experience to share their recommendations live!

The Complexity of Trauma: Finding Yourself in the Eye of the Storm

We are in a time of unprecedented ongoing trauma, and what goes unnoticed is the impact it is having on our leaders… particularly DEI and ERG leaders. We honor the complexity of standing for inclusion, belonging, and justice, while dealing with the collective and vicarious traumas of the world and within the organization daily, layered on potential personal past wounds and all on a foundation of historical trauma. The question becomes, how do you care for yourself in these times? Dr. Maiysha Clairborne is a Physician, Speaker, Consultant, and Trauma Informed Communication Trainer. In this interactive talk, Dr. Clairborne will bring light to the complexity of our experiences, and share how to find our center in the storm and restore our sense of safety, connection, and agency in the chaos.

Intersections of Service

An assessment of 90-workplace interventions across over 230 companies found nearly all, including resilience training and access to sleep apps, did not benefit employee well-being. There was one notable exception, however: Volunteering positively correlates with improved workplace well-being. In many organizations, ERGs are influential voices driving social responsibility and transforming communities, while fostering allyship across groups through volunteer activities. Join us in a social impact project, learning about an intersectional community need while serving together by creating and/or assembling items for donation.

To foster innovation in ERGs, we must equip and empower the leaders who dedicate time and energy to the groups. Each of our workshop-style breakout sessions will feature DIA winners sharing best practices designed to spark your own ideas! Sessions are aligned in these program tracks: 

Business Strategies

Treating ERGs with the same level of thoughtfulness and rigor as managing a business is a strategy that yields strong and sustainable outcomes, and fuels innovation. Aligning the operational rhythms of your ERG with those of your company enables group activities and goals to reinforce the value of ERGs in achieving business objectives. The sessions in this track will focus on integration of DEI principles into the core business processes as part of your organizational DNA rather than a separate effort or moment-in-time.

Led by Dr. Kevin England, topics in this track will include Optimizing the ERG Leader Lifecycle, and ERG Business Rhythms and Routines. 

Design Thinking

This methodology enables ERGs to develop tailored, innovative solutions that support members and contribute to the broader organizational culture of inclusivity. The emphasis on iterative learning and problem-solving aligns perfectly with the dynamic, evolving nature of DEI work and ever-changing ERG leadership. The sessions in this track will equip attendees with tools and methods to drive meaningful change, enhance member engagement, and ultimately, ignite business innovation.

Led by Aimee Broadhurst, topics in this track include the ABCs of Allyship, and Creating Low-Cost, High-Impact Programming. 

People-Centric Practices

ERGs rely upon the dedicated volunteers who provide events, programs, and opportunities for members. To create sustainable ERGs and encourage leadership during challenging times, we must invest in our volunteers. People-centric practices place experiences and needs of individuals at the heart of ERG initiatives. The sessions in this track focus on experiences which enable attendees to strengthen internal communities and amplify ERG contributions to organizational culture, paving the way for more inclusive and innovative workplaces.

Topics in this track include Fostering a Culture of Belonging, and Cultivating Psychological Safety in ERGs.

And introducing…ERG Hackathons! These events originated in IT companies, created to bring together cross-functional teams to devise fast and/or high-quality solutions through collaboration between experts. We’ll use this methodology to tackle several ERG challenges, and devise solutions that can only materialize through this gathering of knowledgeable participants. We’ll address cross-industry and community opportunities, leaning into our intersections while we innovate together.