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Andrés Tapia  

Senior Partner, Korn Ferry Leadership & Talent Consulting; Bestselling Author, The Inclusion Paradox; Leading Expert on Diversity and Workforce Issues

Andrés Tapia is a Senior Client Partner and is Korn Ferry’s Global Diversity and Inclusion Strategist. He has been one of the leading voices in shaping a contemporary, next-generation approach to diversity and inclusion. The approach is global, deeply integrated into talent systems, and focused on enabling marketplace success. He has over 25 years of experience as a C-suite management consultant, diversity executive, organizational development and training professional, and journalist.

Throughout Europe, Asia, North America, and his native Latin America, Mr. Tapia has served clients in shaping their enterprise-wide diversity and inclusion business cases and strategies across industries—including financial, technology, healthcare, retail, manufacturing, government, not-for-profits, and education—with dozens of Global 500 organizations as well as non-US multinationals in Brazil, South Korea, and India.

Mr. Tapia, the author of a groundbreaking book, "The Inclusion Paradox: The Obama Era and the Transformation of Global Diversity," as well as the co-author of "Auténtico: The Definitive Guide to Latino Career Success" and of "The 5 Disciplines of Inclusive Leadership: Unleashing the Power of All of Us." He is a frequently sought-after speaker globally on the topic of diversity and inclusion. He has been published in major dailies throughout the US and Latin America, primarily through his writing for the New America Media wire service as well as on the Huffington Post.

He is the recipient of numerous leadership and diversity awards and is currently serving on the boards of Leadership Greater Chicago, Jobs For The Future, and Ravinia Festival. He previously served as a Commissioner on the Highland Park (IL) Housing Commission overseeing that city's Inclusionary Housing code. He now serves in an elected position as Highland Park City Councilmember. He began his four-year term on May 10, 2021.

Speech Topics


Bogeys and Eagles, Set Points and Love: Implication of Diversity to Sports and Entertainment

Generally speaking, the worlds of sports and entertainment have been viewed as ahead of the business world when it comes to diversity. In sports, wins are wins and losses are losses. For entertainers, fans are in the seats or they aren’t. But pull back the curtain and all is not as it seems – in the front office or in front of audiences. Even high-profile celebrities have not been able to dramatically increase the diversity of players and fans in some sports such as golf or tennis. As with business, diversity in sports and entertainment affects the bottom line.

In this presentation, Andrés Tapia makes the compelling case for greater diversity in sports and entertainment. He shares stories of how tennis and golf are working to increase diversity and the reasons behind the positive and not-so-positive results of these efforts. Tapia connects the diversity efforts of the sports and entertainment worlds to approaches in the business sphere and explains what these different environments can learn from each other.

Why Ignoring Diversity Is Making Us Sicker and Poorer

One size does not fit all. Companies are discovering that there can be wide differences in how non-majority employees take advantage of the benefits available to all employees. For example, minorities under-participate in preventive healthcare services even when it is available and at little or no cost. And women often show poorer investment returns on their retirement portfolios. A cultural component affects how groups view and access their benefits.

Andrés Tapia explains the reasons for these gaps and provides compelling insights on how to minimize them. He helps audience members discover innovative solutions that tap into the behavioral cultural drivers that enable companies to harness cost and operational efficiencies while at the same time motivating employees to better manage their health and finances.

The Toughest Challenge: The Broken, Leaking, Plugged-up Diverse Talent Pipeline

Despite the current state of unemployment, companies are not ready for the war for talent that is coming. Already, some industries are feeling the effects of insufficient numbers of people – multicultural and majority talent – being available for employment and leadership. The diverse talent pipeline is broken, leaking, and clogged up. In some cases, it is connected to talent pools that are drying up. In others, it is not connected to those talent pools that are rising. Where will companies find their future diverse employees and leaders?

In this highly interactive presentation, Andrés Tapia helps audiences discover ways to cultivate the necessary talent and leadership in both the short- and long-term. He proposes eye-opening solutions to this dilemma that are simple and deliberate, and that play to the particular strengths businesses bring to any challenge.

Disability: The Diversity Issue We Fear the Most

In a split second, any one of us can experience a life-changing event that could leave us disabled. It is the one diversity category that anyone can join at any moment. And it frightens most of us more than we admit. Not only is the fear prevalent in society and in our workplaces, it is a topic that even diversity practitioners struggle to address. Through the use of compelling stories, Tapia helps audiences face this fear while rethinking the concepts of disability and ability. He encourages audiences to view disabilities as a part of the human condition while transforming our workplaces to leverage the skills, talents, and ambitions of people with disabilities.

The Four Pillars of What Makes People of Color Stay and Thrive

Many company recruiters have become quite adept at finding, courting, and hiring multicultural talent. Where this process collapses is retaining and training this same group of employees. Too often, and often much too quickly, heavily recruited minority employees depart after hitting the hidden barriers of exclusion. In this stimulating discussion, Tapia helps company leaders understand the aspects of corporate culture that weaken multicultural employees’ bonds to their companies. He helps companies find alternative ways to address the revolving door syndrome for multicultural talent.

Women in Leadership: Why Current Best Practices Will Not Be Enough to Shatter the Glass Ceiling

In much of the world, women represent half of the labor force. They have revolutionized the workplace with their presence, their perspectives, skills, and demands. Women have introduced new approaches to managing people and working collaboratively, and led the way to new benefits that support all employees. As a result, our corporations and countries have been enriched. Yet despite this reality, women still have a long way to go before reaching parity at the executive level.

In this discussion, Tapia shares the breakthrough changes that are needed to advance greater numbers of women into the executive suite. He offers corporate leaders innovative ways of looking at the different perspectives and behaviors women bring to the workplace, while providing ways to discuss these differences openly and honestly with both women and men.

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The Millennials: Why This Generation Will Challenge the Workplace like No Other

We are not ready for our children to go to work. Yet employees of our children’s generation are already in the workforce. And our workplaces will never be the same. In this eye-opening discussion, Tapia explores how Millennials are affecting the workplace with their views on tenure, best practices, work/life balance, planning, and expectations. He explains what this younger generation wants and needs from supervisors and what they are prepared to give in return. This is a provocative discussion that will leave audiences reevaluating how they approach all employees, not just newcomers.

Are you Evil, a Moron, or Just Plain Incompetent

Our lives resonate with stories. Since the beginning of humanity, people have used stories to pass information, history, and values from one generation to the next. Andres Tapia uses the power of stories – his own and others – to help audiences understand the stories behind our identities. This highly entertaining and humorous presentation enables audiences to recognize their similarities and their differences, and to call out those differences in constructive, diversity-enhancing ways. It is through our own cultural lenses that enable us to see others as evil, morons, just plain incompetent, or simply with a different worldview.

Next Generation Diversity: Global, Profitable, and Sustainable

There is much uncertainty now about finance, healthcare, business and HR. The world is upside down, conventional wisdom is slipping into the realm of confusion, and the best practices of Diversity 1.0 have run their course. As a result, our global, hyper-competitive business environment requires that our workplaces adopt the next generation of diversity practices.

In this presentation, Andrés Tapia describes key trends and strategies in diversity and inclusion and cross cultural competence that affect all businesses. In his riveting and passionate manner, Tapia shares the next framework for high impact diversity work and offers practical, groundbreaking approaches that business leaders can implement to harness the power of cross cultural competence – the critical ingredient for creating inclusive workplaces.

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