Amy S. Tolbert

Amy S. Tolbert, Ph.D., CSP develops multicultural organizations and individuals by bringing you cutting-edge topics, such as, multicultural and diversity initiatives, leadership competency development, managing to style, and creating breakthrough teams. She is principal of ECCO (Energizing Cultural Change in Organizations) International, which specializes in increasing individuals’ productivity and organizations’ profitability through virtual and facilitated learning.

She is well authored with 4 books, many articles, validated assessment tools, asynchronous course offerings, active blogs and author of a video based global communications training to develop intercultural communication skills called Open Mind, Open World. Her offerings include actionable tools, processes and practice – a paradigm shifter with her stories and examples.

She earned her Certified Speaking Professional designation with the National Speakers Association. The CSP is the speaking profession’s international measure of speaking experience and skill. Fewer than 10 percent of the speakers who belong to the International Federation for Professional Speakers hold this professional designation. She was awarded the Mark LeBlanc Award for excellence in the speaking industry and was inducted into the MN Speakers Hall of Fame. Dr. Tolbert earned her doctorate in Human Resource Development, focusing on international/cross-cultural and diversity education/training, from the University of Minnesota. As an esteemed part of the Carlson Executive Faculty, Carlson Executive Education Center, Carlson School of Management, University of Minnesota, Dr. Tolbert earned her doctorate in Human Resource Development, focusing on international/cross-cultural and diversity education/training, from the University of Minnesota. She continues to support her alma mater by serving as adjunct faculty for several annual programs at Carlson Executive Education.


Most Requested Programs

Reversing the Ostrich Approach to Diversity: Pulling your head out of the sand
What is the Ostrich Approach?
Although the image of an ostrich burying its head in the sand is based on myth rather than fact, it is the perfect icon to depict the many avoidance tactics we use to deal with the tough stuff – including diversity. All the running, hiding and avoidance (a.k.a., the ostrich approach) won’t change what’s going on around us. We need to be strong, make a commitment and pull our heads out of the sand so we can communicate more clearly and effectively with one another.

Communicating Across Styles
Why is it easy to communicate with some individuals while communicating with others creates conflict and confusion? Communication and behavioral styles vary from person to person and are culturally bound; some are compatible with ours and, for various reasons, some are not. By understanding our own behavioral strengths and learning how to identify and value behavioral strengths in others, we can improve the way we work with others across styles, discover viable solutions to resolve conflict, and relieve stress that comes with miscommunication. During this session, keynote speaker Dr. Amy Tolbert uses audience activities in a session that is motivating, inspirational, life-changing (okay – educational and informative, too)!

Is your Bias Showing?
Is your communication bias-free? Think again.
Knowing we are all biased may be a hard pill to swallow. Unconscious bias, a key component of inclusion, impacts our communication and our workplace relationships every day. It is not a question of if we are biased, but knowing which bias is at play is the first step to awareness. With that understanding we can then make a conscious choice to shift thinking which in turn allows us to change behavior. To understand bias, we have to understand ourselves, our own implicit bias and our target audience.

We will start with the convergence of bias with the diverse workforce and marketplace of today, including cultural attitudes about age, gender, race, ethnicity, religion, social class, sexuality, disability status, nationality, etc. We have biases; you have biases. The first step is awareness.

Diversity, Equity and Inclusion: Moving from Unconscious Bias to Conscious Inclusion (focused on leaders)
The implications from not providing the tools to address diversity, equity and inclusion and the inability to build skills to leverage diversity and create an inclusive work environment can not only be devastating to an organization, but undermine its success. Diversity, equity and inclusion create an organization’s lens for innovation. The impact on the talent pipeline alone can leave an organization stagnant and unable to address the needs of its diverse workforce and customers. Learn to tap diversity and build an inclusive culture to build organizational strength.

Talking ‘bout My Generation...
Do you feel like you are speaking a different language in the workplace? Are you met with blank stares from your peers in meetings? Are you bumping into generational differences more and more every day?

In this session, we will work together to identify and understand the actual and perceived differences among generations – and most importantly what you can do about it!.