Breakout Session


August 11th at 1PM CST in Capitol Ballroom B

Chief Executive Officer at

Crisis as a Platform for Culture Change 

by Dr. Shelton J. Goode (He/Him)

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Presentation Description

As a result of the pandemic, leaders must help their organizations figure out how to adapt — especially as employees return to the workplace. The challenges faced by leaders have become the new battlefront because of the coronavirus. Organizations across the country that had to deal with disruptions from the coronavirus are now just ramping back up and grappling with the scale of disruption — and the resulting fear that has gripped workers.


Leaders must reconnect the organization. Leaders guiding their organizations' efforts have implemented work-from-home policies, dusted off business continuity plans, and ordered stringent safety measures to protect employees and customers. New policies that emphasize deep cleaning office spaces, self-quarantining, virtual job interviews are now commonplace.


Leaders do not have a playbook for this, but one thing is clear; the workplace during and after the pandemic will be different for large and small companies. The depth of the disruption will force leaders to implement actions in response to the coronavirus pandemic that will shift practices, processes, and behaviors in the workplace over the long term. For example, telecommuting will become more ingrained, in and out of favor for decades. Also, the use of digital tools for remote collaboration will rise. As a result, leaders will have to train managers to supervise teams of remote workers.

The shift in workplace culture will have significant implications. How leaders respond will impact talent acquisition, employee engagement, talent retention. Managing in a post-pandemic workplace will also become harder to exert potential pressure on corporate costs and expenses.


Leading a high-performing organization isn't easy, and the data tells us that the challenges will only get more robust in the future. Organizations will need more from their leaders. They will need integrated programs, a sustainable and affordable source of diverse talent, and a leadership team that enables learning throughout the organization. 

Three Takeaways:

Participants will walk away with a better understanding of the future of organizations during and after the pandemic in strategy, operations, culture and employee engagement, talent acquisition, talent management, and learning and development. Key takeaways from the engagement include:

  • Tools and resources leaders can use to generate ideas and seek out better practices.

  • Tools and resources to help leaders enhance culture change expertise and improve their inclusive leadership skills.

  • Ideas and culture change innovations implemented in companies.


Speaker Bio:

Dr. Shelton Goode is the president and chief executive officer of Icarus Consulting. This veteran-owned consulting firm specializes in helping organizations create a culture that leverages diversity and inclusion for competitive advantage. Icarus Consulting accomplishes this by developing strategies that enable their clients to attract, develop, and retain highly skilled talent from an emerging diverse workforce and, at the same time, enhance the engagement, knowledge, and skill of current employees. Forbes has recognized Dr. Goode as one of the “Top 10 D&I Trailblazers” in the country.

Dr. Goode is the author of several award-winning books, including Beyond Inclusion: Reimagining the Future of Work, Workers, and the Workplace, Diversity Managers: Angels of Mercy or Barbarians at the Gate, Winter in America: The Impact of the 2016 Presidential Election on Diversity in Companies, Communities, and the Country, and Crisis as a Platform for Social Change from Strawberry Mansion to Silicon Valley.

Dr. Goode, a highly decorated Air Force veteran, has served the country in times of war and consistently served his community in a time of need. In July 2011, the Supreme Court of Georgia appointed him to the State Bar Ethics Investigative Panel.

In 2019, Forbes selected him as one of the Top 10 Diversity and Inclusion Trailblazers. The National Association of African Americans in Human Resources awarded him their HR Trailblazer Award in 2005 and 2012 -- the only person selected for the award twice. In April 2013, Georgia’s Technology Association presented him with the first Roosevelt Thomas Lifetime Achievement Award for his body of work in diversity, equity, and inclusion.

Dr. Goode is a graduate of the prestigious Diversity Leadership Academy. He was certified as a senior diversity practitioner by the American Institute for Managing Diversity. He obtained his Doctorate in Public Administration from the University of Alabama.