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DES launches virtual “Inclusive Leadership” workshop Sept. 1-2

Elizabeth Fontanilla, an instructor at the Department of Enterprise Services, leads the “Inclusive Leadership” pilot workshop before the class became a virtual, instructor-led training.

The Department of Enterprise Services recently launched the first virtual instructor-led training in the “Inclusive Leadership” series: “Mitigating Implicit Bias in the Hiring Process.”

While hiring authorities might intend to choose the most qualified candidate, implicit biases—which are based on unconscious associations and feelings—can impact hiring decisions. The workshop is designed to help leaders become aware of their own biases and the subsequent impacts these biases have on the hiring process.

Instructor Elizabeth Fontanilla developed the curriculum for the workshop, which debuted in February, before the COVID-19 outbreak. It was then converted into a four-hour, virtual, instructor-led training. DES’s Leadership Development team spent nearly a month researching how to design and deliver virtual, instructor-led trainings to prepare for the transition. Fontanilla teaches the workshop with Joanne Lee, also of DES.

Fontanilla is passionate about the mission the workshop serves. “More diverse representation in our state workforce will lead to innovation, quality decision-making and better outcomes for the people of Washington. I am proud that DES is leading the way to provide strategies and tools for systemic change in the hiring process,” Fontanilla says.

The next workshop is September 1-2, with more scheduled through December. Register for “Inclusive Leadership” or learn more.

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