DEI Commitment

A Letter from Our MDA Chair and Founder

Every business is part of an ecosystem. At MDA we exist in and contribute to the context of our world and our communities. This holds special meaning as all of us consider our response to systemic racism, diversity, equity, and inclusion.

Our stake in the ground about DEI starts at our core—leadership matters. I have always believed that the more power we share, the larger our collective power becomes.

Yet there is much work to do. The latest Women in the Workplace study shares important data and insights. The “broken rung” remains broken. For the eighth consecutive year, a “broken rung” at the first step up to manager is holding women back. For every 100 men who are promoted from entry level to manager, only 82 women of color are promoted. Also Latinas and Black women are less likely than women of other races and ethnicities to say their manager shows interest in their career development. As a result, men significantly outnumber women at the manager level, and women can never catch up. There are simply too few women to promote into senior leadership positions.

In addition, more women leaders are leaving their companies. Now companies have a new pipeline problem. Women leaders are leaving their companies at the highest rate in years, and the gap between women and men leaders leaving is the largest we’ve ever seen. To put the scale of the problem in perspective: for every woman at the director level who gets promoted to the next level, two women directors are choosing to leave their company.

We are committed to addressing these challenges at MDA Leadership. For instance, our assessment-informed succession planning can significantly aid efforts to identify and develop diverse, high-potential employees, particularly early in their careers, and help your organization achieve greater bench diversity long-term. Specifically, assessment can more accurately reveal “hidden gems” in your organization, particularly among diverse talent. With mentoring and support, these individuals can become your bench for senior-level leadership roles in the future.

Hopefully you will see evidence of our commitments in the way we work with you and your team members going forward. In addition, we hope you’ll read the first article in our diversity series to learn more about our work. We welcome your feedback.

Sandra Davis
Chair & Founder

Our Commitment to Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion

Leadership matters. No other factor has a greater impact on an organization than its leadership. MDA Leadership promotes the importance of leading with humanity and with an informed perspective on diversity, equity, and inclusion. The leaders of today and tomorrow are called to do better in breaking down systemic bias and ridding their organizations of discriminatory practices. The leaders for tomorrow will be continually learning and creating expansive environments for belonging.

We believe that only such leaders and their organizations will be capable of sustainable and true excellence. We are committed to taking the personal and collective journeys that challenge our assumptions, our minds, and our hearts to build our leadership character, to continuously educate ourselves on DEI, and to apply that knowledge to our practices and in our work with leaders.

NOTE: Diversity exists whenever there are differences between people, including race, ethnicity, gender, sexual orientation, socioeconomic status, age, tenure, geographical location, physical ability, education, religion, and thought.

C-suite Selection and Succession: Delivering Leadership Excellence for the Future

MDA Leadership helps CEOs articulate executive leadership needs, identify top talent, and accelerate C-suite transitions.

Senior Executive Blueprinting ™
Succession planning begins at the top. CEOs, in partnership with human resources and their boards, must think carefully about the talent they need for the future in key leadership roles. Similar to CEO Blueprinting™, MDA Leadership helps our clients articulate the executive leadership they will need to successfully navigate emerging business challenges and drive evolving strategies.
C-suite Selection and Succession
Not all C-suite hires and promotions achieve success. We help CEOs select the right executives by bringing an informed, experienced, and objective voice to the table. Based on a CEO’s criteria and an organization’s norms, we assess and analyze executive candidates to provide definitive and well-grounded promotion and hiring recommendations.
C-Suite Transitions
About 60% of executives say they were not prepared for the strategic challenges they faced in their new senior leadership roles.3 MDA Leadership accelerates effective transition into the C-suite. Through a unique discovery process, we help executives gain deep insight into what it will take to be successful given stakeholder expectations, team dynamics, and the nuances of C-suite leadership. Our seasoned coaches guide leaders in designing and executing highly relevant and engaging onboarding plans.

Board Services: Enhancing Board Effectiveness

MDA Leadership helps boards strengthen their governance roles and internal dynamics.

Board Evaluations
Most boards are required to evaluate their own performance on an annual basis—an exercise that can range from “checking the box” to an experience that truly engages board members in the right conversations. Our services include full board evaluations, individual director reviews, peer feedback, chair role transitions, and action planning.
Board and CEO Consultation
Creating strong board and CEO collaboration requires mutual trust and respect. Forging and maintaining productive relationships cannot be left to chance. MDA Leadership provides trusted advisor consultation for CEOs and their boards to foster alignment in critical areas such as decision-making, role clarity, governance, and communication.
CEO Coaching and Trusted Advisor Consultation
Two-thirds of CEOs don’t receive any outside advice on their leadership skills, and yet almost all would be receptive to suggestions from a coach.4 Since a one-size-fits-all playbook for CEOs doesn’t exist, MDA Leadership provides CEO coaching. Whether business performance is hitting the mark or not, even seasoned CEOs benefit from the safe place and counsel we provide to help them evolve their leadership.

Let’s begin a conversation.

At MDA Leadership, we know there are no one-size-fits-all solutions for every organization. We take the time to get to know your business and your leadership needs and recommend a range of options that are the best fit for your growth goals. Let's see how MDA Leadership can optimize your Talent Strategy for the Long Run®.