Spark!

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Outcomes & Topics

Course 4

Cognitive Diversity & Innovative Systems: Learn the rich potential of what Cognitive Diversity can bring to the table when it comes to thinking innovatively. Discover how this intersection will invigorate and supercharge innovation efforts. Apply innovation strategies through Elevate’s practical TrailBlaze Tools.




The Mind and Myriad Worldviews: Cognitive Diversity shapes how we view the world differently, from Time Perception (how cultures and individuals view time), to how we perceive the same behaviors and interactions differently, based on our mind’s eye. How do we leverage this to our benefit when generating new or alternative ideas?




Design Thinking through Cognitive Diversity: Interweave these two approaches and you will spark even more-fruitful collaboration. Design Thinking provides key processes and approaches, while Cognitive Diversity synergizes perspectives and experiences from a multitude of lenses and backgrounds.

Assess Adaptably

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What Lies Beneath—Confronting Cognitive & Emotional Bias, Triggers & Behaviors: This session includes interactive exercises that lead to a range of emotions and cognitive development, from discomfort to discovery. The activities, research, and results will shift from comfort to discomfort zones in order to take participants to the next level in their journey toward ADVIICE.



That Which Lives Above—Ascending Toward Inclusion: After participants descend into the depths of diversity and their own inner workings, the course elevates them toward serving as inclusion champions who leverage intercultural effectiveness to support others. This includes elements of what an inclusion champion looks like, as well as Intercultural Effectiveness Tools.



Intercultural Effectiveness—Up, Down, and All Around: Ultimately, participants will inventory resources and actions that will change the culture, as they realize that Intercultural Effectiveness comes from all around their workplace. They will grow into champions who help others, whether above, below or around them in the organizational charts, in order to create a positive environment that values Intercultural Effectiveness. 

Steer, Solve & Shift

As ERG Leaders and Members, you invest your passion for people and the organization as volunteers. Ask your executive sponsors and D&I Team to support your participation so that you can increase this virtuous cycle of performance. 

Understand Different Conflict Types and Styles: This includes conflicts that are personal vs. process, as well as how professionals position and perceive conflicts differently, based on their own styles. Learn how to navigate these differences.



From Flashpoints to Productive Pivots: What remains acceptable and works in one cultural context may have negative consequences in another. When diverse views and cultures collide, this can create flashpoints that spark into tensions. What if we can pivot these into productive and positive discussions? Could they propel us beyond compromise to viable alternatives or innovations to be implemented? Discover how to shift flashpoints to productive pivots that can help us in our ascent to peak performance.



Conscientious Collaboration across Cultures: Collaboration isn’t unilaterally positive. For instance, automatic collaboration can lead to collaboration fatigue. This course focuses on conscientious collaboration to make it selective and productive, while keeping collaboration in appropriate doses. Furthermore, it balances cultural awareness with collaboration to maximize gains as it opens up safe spaces for dialogue and idea sharing—even from those sea changing thoughts that can initially seem odd or weird!

We know that the journey continues every day. We help guide you to steer your organization in the best direction possible. We do more than advise and strategize, as we can implement some of these with training and even producing, such as multimedia tools, curricula, and other necessary content. We have a team of designers who engage in design-thinking approaches. We also know that “shift happens,” (which is actually the name of one of our courses), so we shift with you when it does. We’re on this journey together with you.

The Executive Sponsorship Stretch

Outcomes & Topics

Yet, within your organizational culture, there are diverse cultures that represent an individual team member’s background and values. That’s where you need a more-global and nuanced intercultural approach which examines, leverages, and synergizes the interaction of cultures. Think of it as cross-pollinating cultures and unlocking that vast potential.


We view organizational culture at an elevated level as we specialize in Intercultural Effectiveness for your organization. With the interaction of cultures internal to your organizational culture, (as well as external to your customers, stakeholders, and shifting marketplace), you will need intercultural approaches. These approaches serve as a foundation for areas such as cultural transformation, diversity, inclusion, and the emerging words from where it may expand, such as belonging, equity, and intersectionality, and innovation. This also allows us to draw from multiple methods and strategies, rather than a singular-lens view. Ultimately, we leverage Intercultural Effectiveness to optimize organizational performance, whether through helping your talent develop or align with the enterprise strategies, gaining a competitive advantage in the marketplace communities you serve, or serving a higher purpose.

Cognitive Diversity & Innovation Systems and Strategies

Tools for Leading the Diverse, Interculturally Effective Workforce of the Future

How We Partner with You

Arc
/ärk/ | plural noun: arcs ​


  1. A smooth, curving movement or line.
  2. Powerful flow of energy that goes across a space between two points.
  3. The internal change the hero or heroine goes through in a story.​
  4. Spectrum Knowledge guides you to Intercultural Effectiveness and we embody this with our logo. We take the energy and color spectrum, which has polar opposites of ultraviolet and infrared, and unify them to create an arc of positive movement. Yes, this is reflected in the logo as well. Together, your organization and our organization can take a storied journey that we hope will lead to an epic hero’s victory.

Direct reports often assume that executives, managers, and other leaders are all cognizant and competent about intercultural interactions and insights, such as diversity, inclusion, belonging, equity, and other related hubs of managing differences. The reality is that the vast majority of leaders have to focus on their core roles and responsibilities and may require additional training as those areas may be beyond their domain expertise. It is their passion to help others that places them in these sponsorship positions. This session arms advocates, challenges champions, and supports sponsors for success. It also provides them with the intercultural tools necessary for champions to succeed in supporting their teams and direct reports.

Customize Conscientiously

Course 5

 Elevate leverages the collective intelligence and wisdom from a team of faculty to optimize the curriculum—and your learning experience!

Trademarked Trailblaze Tools

Below we feature a selection of representative courses that will S.P.I.C.E. up your journey toward Intercultural Effectiveness! These courses can also be customized to your strategic goals and organizational needs. With the vast library of TrailBlaze Tools, we can both curate the Tools for a tailored experience, as well as modify the Tools to really co-create a Tool for your organization. In fact, the Tool could serve as your organization’s own signature Intercultural Effectiveness Tool! 

How to Succeed as an Executive Sponsor of Diversity Initiatives

Conflicts can range from personal to process disagreements. Add to this the underlying differences in cultural values and beliefs that we all bring to professional workplaces. This can concoct a cocktail of volatility and avoidance. Crash! helps you to divert these detrimental disagreements that stem from diverse views toward more-productive and positive discussions. This takes conflict management at least two levels higher—toward Conscientious Collaboration (one level) and Intercultural Effectiveness (another level). Now you can shift toward positive collisions that erupt into positive cheers, rather than frustrated jeers. 

The Intercultural Accelerator: This represents an accelerated version of Intercultural Effectiveness that dives right in, gets to the point, and demonstrates positive results and Returns-on-Investment (ROI). Executives and leaders speak this language, so we adapt interculturally to this high-level “champion speak” as well.



From Standards to Strategic Success: This portion of the curriculum focuses on what beneficiaries expect from their champions and sponsors. This can range from the champions and sponsors serving as advisors and coaches, to advocates and rainmakers. More so, it emphasizes how champions function as conduits between the higher-level organizational strategies and the beneficiaries of those they champion—this helps align the champions’ constituents to the overarching strategy.



The Superstar Stretch Assignment: How can champions view their roles as a stretch assignment, even at a higher level? This portion examines areas such as how to expand influence, leverage the grass-roots platforms of their beneficiaries, develop from reverse mentoring, and grow from learning across cultures, which allows champions to stay adaptable. For executives, mental and cognitive agility are continued keys to success. Why not capitalize on championing as a major opportunity? 

Outcomes & Topics

How and Why This Program Benefits You and Your Organization

Intercultural FutureWork

The Executive Sponsorship Stretch

Leaders often state that “culture eats strategy for breakfast.” Why does one have to eat the other in competition? This statement should underscore the importance of each and beyond, as demonstrated in the intersection of the S.P.I.C.E. elements. We partner with you to “build a better breakfast,” as we:

  • Start off with a foundation of cognitive and behavioral research
  • Add a side of strategic alignment
  • Upgrade from culture to interculture
  • Pour a hearty helping of PURPLE with purposeful people


Now you have a recipe for success with Intercultural Effectiveness.

Interactive Learning

Advancing Intercultural & Inclusion Champions Effectiveness (ADVIICE): 

Collective Intelligence & Wisdom

Course 1

We take multiple arcs with you, which reflects the ARCS. Here are the key steps embodied by the ARCS.

The media often portrays the future of work as Silicon Valley-style hi-tech companies and their dominant work cultures. True, that is a very significant driver of the future workplace, but even these successful organizations struggle with how to engage with their diverse workforces. Companies in other industries and legacy companies that have endured and thrived also will need to engage the evolving and ever-changing workforce. Intercultural FutureWork integrates the continually emerging workplace and workforce research and trends with the powerful lens of Intercultural Effectiveness for the purpose of your organization’s success. This unique program will help you leverage the intercultural diversity of your team members to achieve your organization’s strategic vision and optimize its foundational mission. 

 Elevate features learning that appeals to multiple senses and dynamically engages participants.

What

​makes this

program

UNIQUE?

Move from Intercultural Conflict to Intercultural Collaboration

The large foundation from the TrailBlaze Tools library culminates in conscientiously-customized solutions. Yes, we do have our approaches, but believe that it will likely appear more like a Venn diagram that presents an intersection between your needs and ours. We also believe that when we help you help your own customer, an additional circle is added to the Venn for an even greater strategic focus.

Outcomes & Topics

Culture
cul·​ture | \ ˈkəl-chər \


  1. Shared attitudes, beliefs, values, and behavioral patterns of a particular group.
  2. What Spectrum Knowledge will help your organization transform for tangible results, as team members become aligned to drive better outcomes & increased performance, from talent pipelines to marketplace competitive advantage.

Outcomes & Topics

Leverage Power, Privilege & Practical Tools for Intercultural Awareness and Advocacy

INTERCULTURAL: Leverage and synergize the interaction of cultures.

EFFECTIVENESS: Ultimately, results and outcomes are driven by ongoing efforts to enhance effectiveness.

Spark!

The terms organism and organization share the same root word “organ.” In fact, organizations have similarities to organisms in their design. Multi-breed organisms generally are heartier and thrive above single-breed organisms—they must cross-pollinate or face decline or extinction. Even financial investment portfolios that outperform must diversity and cross-pollinate strategies.

Likewise, your organization’s culture represents one of its major cores. Cultural effectiveness drives organizational outcomes, such as:

  • Increased revenue and customer satisfaction
  • Strengthened talent pipelines, including recruitment, retention, and development
  • Enhanced engagement and work environments

Intercultural Effectiveness Offerings

Crash!

Course 3

Leverage Power, Privilege & Practical Tools for Intercultural Awareness and Advocacy

Crash!

Recommend Rigorously

Table of Contents

Move from Intercultural Conflict to Intercultural Collaboration

Tools for Leading the Diverse, Interculturally Effective Workforce of the Future

PURPLE: Our tagline is “PURpose + peoPLE = PURPLE.” We believe that, even with an exceptional strategy and culture, your people will achieve peak performance if you can find the intersection of individual and organizational purpose. Find the mutual PURPLE.

Course 2

Intercultural Effectiveness & S.P.I.C.E.

With over 150 TrailBlaze Tools, we draw from a diverse array of practical and strategic Tools to equip us on this hero’s arc and to give us the smooth and energetic paths that defines the word arc.

When many hear the word “diversity,” they often assume the trinity of race, gender, and age. In fact, diversity encompasses many more intangibles and invisibles from all of our experiences, such as cultural backgrounds (cultural values and socioeconomics, geography and climate, as well as other worldviews, micro perceptions, etc.). These elements weave into the fabric of our experiences that form the Cognitive Diversity we often overlook. In fact, much of what dominates thinking today stems from a small sliver of human minds. What if we can unlock possibilities and potential of your people as we discover their Cognitive Diversity? What if we then leveraged and focused this vast potential toward innovation (and inspiration, while we’re at it)? Welcome to Spark! You will learn to increase innovative thinking through research-based approaches and practical systems and strategies—with Cognitive Diversity interwoven as a foundational core element.

Intercultural Effectiveness means more than delivering intercultural competence and communication training. We integrate the following key elements embodied in the diagram with S.P.I.C.E.This is not a singular model or approach, but rather the synergies of key elements that lead to Intercultural Effectiveness—and ultimately, positive effectiveness and outcomes for your organization.

Cognitive Diversity & Innovation Systems and Strategies

STRATEGIC ALIGNMENT: The intercultural efforts need to align with the organization’s overarching strategic vision and goals.

How to Succeed as an Executive Sponsor of Diversity Initiatives

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COGNITIVE & BEHAVIORAL: Advance your organization with research- and science-based approaches to activate actions toward positive results.

We avoid a single, cookie-cutter approach, as we have multiple tools to ask the questions. The right questions are more important than the right answers. This helps us to discover root causes and challenges.

How can you function as an effective champion for your cultural initiatives, whether it’s diversity, belonging, equity, or inclusion? 

Advancing Intercultural & Inclusion Champions Effectiveness (ADVIICE) 

 The unique S.P.I.C.E. model integrates multiple critical elements to form a more-holistic approach to produce what we believe is true Intercultural Effectiveness.

 Elevate’s signature tools leverage fresh innovative insights into a visual, design-driven format—this aligns with how people learn.

The Future Workforce & Intercultural Infusion: Explore the trends and directions of where the current workforce will head into the future. This will reshape interactions between managers and staff, as embracing leadership at all levels (not just management) and other notions grow increasingly important. Beyond these shifts, Intercultural Effectiveness becomes even more vital, as the workplace has erupted to allow a deluge of diverse, intercultural views and behaviors. Rather than retreat or contain the flood, learn how to channel and unlock these opportunities.

Intercultural Interactions across Media: Now that team members can interact across multiple media platforms and use multimedia tools, interpersonal dynamics in the workplace changes dramatically. Even face-to-face communication has shifted, as we allow a hybrid approach with our technologies during these in-person interactions. Learn how to leverage all of this as part of Intercultural Effectiveness, while still capitalizing on the diverse synergies across different populations and communication styles.

You the Cyborg—Future Career and Cultural Shifts: As the robots and artificial intelligence are coming, you may ask, “Where is my career going?” and “How do I prevent skills commodification?” These are questions that worry many professionals. This course will position participants to move toward differentiated, needed skills and expertise through Intercultural Effectiveness—a win for the team member and organization. Interacting across cultures facilitates career adaptability and mental agility that will lead us all into a brighter future. How do we leverage these new technologies to stand out as cyborgs that blend human and machine? This is a lively topic for longevity of careers and that proliferates productivity.

S.P.I.C.E.

In addition to the multiple elements of Intercultural Effectiveness, we also have a very comprehensive collection of existing tools and methods to equip us on our mutual journey toward success. In fact, we have a library of over 150 Tools and we produce more annually. We call these the signature TrailBlaze Tools. The primary general steps that we take on our mutual journey encompass the ARCS.

The word “arc” features several definitions and we would like to add to these definitions to support you with your strategic goals.

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From Cultural to Intercultural 

Intercultural FutureWork

American Sociological Association, “Diversity Linked to Increased Sales Revenue and Profits, Customers,” April 3, 2009. | CEB, “Driving Retention and Performance Through Employee Engagement,” Arlington, VA, 2008. | Credit Suisse Research Institute, “Gender Diversity and Corporate Performance,” July 31, 2012. | Forbes, “Patenting the Co-Ed Code,” September 13, 2007. | Hewlett, Sylvia Ann, Melinda Marshall and Laura Sherbin with Tara Gonsalves, “Innovation, Diversity & Market Growth,” Center for Talent Innovation, 2013. | National Center for Women & Information Technology, “Who Invents It? Women’s Participation in Information Technology Patenting,” 2012.| Rock, David and Heidi Grant, “Why Diverse Teams are Smarter,” Harvard Business Review, November 4, 2016. | Vanessa Fuhrmans, “Companies With Diverse Executive Teams Posted Bigger Profit Margins, Study Shows,” The Wall Street Journal, January 18, 2018.