Many of us would agree that a more diverse organization creates a more thriving organization. And research has proven that more diverse leadership teams and employee groups are more innovative and creative, perform better and also make better decisions. The questions become, how do you create a more diverse team? How do you catapult diversity within your own organization? In our conversation today with Sheila Murphy, we will answer these questions and talk about Sheila’s 5 Pillars of a More Diverse Environment. We also discuss the structural and emotional intelligence barriers to achieving a more diverse, thriving organization, as well as the benefits that companies can reap when they have more diverse leadership.
- Businesses that have diverse teams outperform and are more creative than homogeneous teams.
- When people are not progressing the same, it is often because they aren’t getting the same information or types of assignments.
- Having a sponsor can make a tremendous difference in an individual’s career.
“You can’t be a good manager or leader unless you understand that people are different and they need different things.” — Sheila Murphy
About Sheila Murphy:
CEO and President, Focus Forward Consulting
After 20 years of successfully litigating and developing and coaching talent in corporate America and law firms, Sheila is pursuing her passion for helping others reach their full potential. Leading with passion and purpose, Sheila is CEO and President of Focus Forward Consulting LLC and Chief Learning & Talent Officer of WOMN LLC, which are focused on having lawyers, leaders and legal organizations achieve their career and business goals. Sheila also continues to support the financial industry in her role as an expert and consultant at Bates Group.
In 2018, Sheila retired as Senior Vice President and Associate General Counsel at MetLife where she provided litigation, regulatory, and risk mitigation advice. As a well-respected thought leader, Sheila served as an executive sponsor to MetLife’s U.S. Women’s Business Network, co-chaired the Legal Affair’s Academy providing developmental opportunities to legal and compliance professionals worldwide, and served as a member of its U.S. Task Force on diversity. Prior to joining MetLife, Sheila was at the law firm of Thacher Proffitt & Wood.
Sheila is a member of the Board of Directors of National Association of Women Lawyers (NAWL). Sheila serves on the advisory board of Transforming Women’s Leadership in Law and co-chairs the CARE’s Women’s Network of New York, which works on eradicating poverty through empowering women and girls. Previously, she was a member of the Board for Read Alliance and PowerPlay, NYC. Sheila received from Corporate Counsel and Inhouse Counsel the Women, Influence, Power in Law, Lifetime Achievement Award for her commitment to advancing and empowering women in the legal profession. Women’s Venture Fund awarded Sheila the highest Leaf Award in recognition of her commitment to helping others advance in their careers. She was named a Most Influential Irish Woman by the Irish Voice, a Leading Women Lawyer in NYC by Crain’s New York, a Business 100 honoree by Irish America, and one of 250 Inspiring Women Entrepreneurs by Databird Journal. Sheila also has received the Benchmark Litigation In-house Award at the Americas Women in Business Awards, the Virginia S. Mueller Outstanding Member Award from NAWL, and a First Chair award for hard work, innovation, and significant contributions to the legal community.
Sheila is a graduate of the University of Pennsylvania Law School, where she served on the Comparative Labor Law Journal and the School of Management at the State University of New York at Binghamton where she graduated magna cum laude. Sheila earned her Associate Certified Coach and Certified Professional Co-Active Coach from the International Coaching Federation and the Co-Active Leadership Institute, respectively. Sheila is a frequent speaker on litigation and regulatory issues, talent, and business development, leadership, and diversity.
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