Sloan Women in Management to host “Breaking the Mold” conference with a focus on developing approaches to manage implicit bias

CAMBRIDGE, Mass., Jan. 29, 2015 — How can the modern science of bias play a part in the training of law enforcement professionals? What roles do media and advertising have in creating and perpetuating stereotypes? How are industry leaders bridging the gender gap?

On Friday, February 6, 2015, the MIT Breaking the Mold Conference hosted by Sloan Women in Management (SWIM) will bring together prominent leaders across a variety of industries to discuss today’s most pressing topics and best practices when it comes to unconscious bias in the workplace.

Research suggests that diverse groups perform better and that a culture of meritocracy alone is not enough to generate groups that reflect the diversity of our society. Being aware of and managing these biases, both conscious and unconscious, can help organizations boost diversity among leadership groups.

Slated speakers and panelists are, among others:

– Jan Fields, Former President, McDonald’s
– Robin Chase, Founder, Zipcar and Buzzcar
– Anna T. Laszlo, Managing Partner, Fair and Impartial Policing (FIP)
– Sandra Moose, Senior Advisor, BCG
– Mike Volpe, Chief Marketing Officer, HubSpot
– Hemal Vaidya, Principal, Deloitte
– Tara Murphy, Vice President and General Manager, Keurig
– Christi Shaw, US Country Head, President of Novartis Corporation and President of Novartis Pharmaceuticals Corporation
– David Epstein, EVP Content and Inventory Strategy, AMC Networks
– Emilio J. Castilla, Associate Professor of Management, MIT Sloan School of Management
– Barbara Mariniello, Managing Director, Investment Banking Division, Debt Capital Markets, Barclays
– Keith Bevans, Partner, Sr. Director of Global Consultant Recruiting, Bain & Company
– Soraya Chemaly, Writer, The Huffington Post
– Christina Hsu, Former Chief Marketing Officer, Nickelodeon

A special interactive workshop will be run by Fair and Impartial Policing (FIP). Anna Laszlo, Director of FIP, will lead the workshop on dealing with unconscious bias in high-pressure situations, the techniques individuals can use to manage personal biases, and the impact of unconscious bias in the organizations that conference participants may help to shape.

In addition, four panels will focus on these timely topics:

Mentorship in the Workplace
How can we ensure that someone paving a new path in a company or industry is able to find the support and mentorship that he or she needs to succeed?

Role of Media in Creating and Breaking Stereotypes
What role does media have in creating and perpetuating stereotypes? What responsibility and scope does the industry have in redefining our associations, and what examples do we have of how this can be done?

Moving Mindsets: How Industry Leaders are Bridging the Gender Gap
Why do we see so few women in careers like finance and tech? What are the challenges, and what needs to happen to overcome them? What are industry leaders doing to reverse the trend, and what can we as individuals do to bridge the gap?

Beyond Quotas: Creating Truly Meritocratic Organizations
How can we create organizations that offer equal opportunities to everyone, both those belonging to underrepresented groups and to the majority group? How can we create true meritocracies that offer fair opportunities for development and advancement?

New this year is the Breaking the Mold: Unconference. This participant-driven workshop will allow conference attendees the chance to lead the discussion. Participants will split up into groups to go deep into the topics that they are most passionate about in order to develop solutions.

To register, please visit

About Sloan Women in Management

Sloan Women in Management (SWIM) works to increase opportunities for all women at MIT Sloan through networking events, speaker series, professional development workshops, mentorship programs, and community-building events. In addition to its year-long programming, SWIM hosts an annual conference where students can dialogue with today’s leading women.