“I had to make my own living and my own opportunity. But I made it! Don’t sit down and wait for the opportunities to come. Get up and make them.”– Madam C.J. Walker
Since the racial reckoning sparked by the 2020 murder of George Floyd, there has been noteworthy progress in terms of the progress Black corporate professionals have made in the United States. Specifically,
- A December 2021 Washington Post study found that among the 50 largest U.S. companies (by April market capitalization), 8% of C-suite executives were Black; Five companies—Merck, UPS, AT&T, UnitedHealth Group and Home Depot—had C-suites where at least 20% of executives were Black.
- The Spencer Stuart Board Index found Black executives accounted for 33% of the 456 new independent directors appointed to S&P 500 companies in 2021—representing a 3x increase from 2020.
- An August 2021 survey of 500 Black-owned businesses conducted by Groupon and the National Black Chamber of Commerce found 80% of Black-owned businesses reported they were better off than they were at the same time in 2020.
But there’s still more progress to be made.
Many Black professionals working in corporate America feel they must overcome obstacles that don’t exist for their white peers. Black professionals enter the workforce with the talent, excitement and ambition to achieve corporate success, better their communities, and support their families. But over time, many of those same professionals become demoralized by both external obstacles – unspoken expectations, microaggressions, systematic oppression, attribution theory – and those from within, such as imposter syndrome, double consciousness and racial socialization.
Being Black in corporate America can be exhausting and isolating.
We see you.
The ELC’s Leadership Development Weeks (LDW) are the premier leadership development experience for Black executives. We create a brave space to help you examine the challenges and opportunities of being a Black leader today.
Through reflection and connection with other Black professionals, you will create an inspirational and strategic network to support you on your leadership journey.
Each LDW is an experience you have never had before—one where all the participants are Black, all the facilitators are Black, and where the course content is centered on the Black experience. It is not your traditional professional development; it is professional development reimagined.
The ELC offers three ways of participating in its 2022 LDWs:
- Face-to-face during LDW East which will be held July 31 – August 5 in Miami, FL
- Virtually during each of the weeks between August 1 and September 16 (see below)
- Face to face during LDW West which will be held September 11 – 16 in San Francisco, CA
Picture yourself attending a training event where:
- You are free to be the best version of your full self
- Course content and visuals reflect your reality and speak to your experience
- Facilitators focus on identifying strategies and tactics instead of ruminating on frustrations and obstacles
- You connect with Black professionals who understand your challenges and perspective
- You approach your professional development as if it were a team sport instead of a solo sport
That’s not just professional development; it is a recipe for personal transformation. Speakers featured during LDW 2021 included:
- Wade Davis—Former NFL player and Vice President of Inclusion Strategy for Product at Netflix
- Martina Edwards—First Black woman equity trader for the New York Stock Exchange
- Lindsay Peoples Wagner—Former Editor-in-Chief at Teen Vogue and youngest editor-in-chief of any Conde Nast publication
At the ELC, we know the Black executives in corporate America must build new skills, develop new alliances and cover new ground. We are here to tell you this: You do not have to do it alone. With more than 800 current and former Black CEOs, board members and senior executives at Fortune 1000 and Global 500 companies, The ELC is committed to helping Black professionals accelerate their career development.
Let The ELC help you.
LDW West provides leadership development, assessments and networking opportunities to help Black executives take control of their careers. Be among the most progressive and powerful Black executives experiencing a week of innovative insights, meaningful networking, and the celebration of their success. Enroll in one of LDW’s five-day courses:
- Bright Futures: Decide to climb the ladder or build your own
- Strategic Pathways for Women: Join a cohort of future Black female CEOs
- Strengthening the Pipeline 1: Build a legacy that reflects who you are
- Course Materials
- All meals, as well as AM and PM snacks
- Keynote speakers
- Graduation Luncheon
- ELC Member speakers
- Virtual post-session with cohort
- Access to continued professional development through the ELC’s Learning
- Management System
- Monthly newsletters
- Access to ELC Webinars