HARRT at UCLA Fall Series Session 2: “Creating Leadership Through Belonging” with Melissa Thomas-Hunt, Professor, University of Virginia Darden School of Business

October 28, 2021 – HARRT’s Faculty Director, Professor Corinne Bendersky shared a fireside chat with our distinguished speaker, Melissa Thomas-Hunt, the John D. Forbes Distinguished Professor of Business Administration, University of Virginia Darden School of Business, Professor of Public Policy, Batten School of Leadership, and former Head of Global Diversity and Belonging at Airbnb where she led the strategy and execution of their global internal diversity, inclusion, equity, and belonging programs, and retains an external senior advisor role focused on advancing connection and belonging research. The focus of the conversation was the importance of “Creating Leadership Through Belonging”.

The workplace has been significantly impacted as a result of the pandemic, technological innovations, economic upheaval, a renewed call for social justice, and new expectations of the workforce, – all of which are impacting the future of work. The emergence of hybrid work, vaccine mandates, changing workplace culture and a focus on DE&I have transformed how organizations attract, retain and motivate employees today and in the future. Recent research indicates that creating a culture of belonging is one of the top drivers that will reshape the employee experience and organizational effectiveness in the future. During the 90 minute, highly interactive session, we discussed practical ways to build a DE&I strategy based on belonging, trust, safety, and transparency.