YWCA Greater Cleveland

Developing Cultural Competency Workshop Series

One of the primary goals of the YWCA is eliminating racism. And we know that nothing exists in a vacuum. Therefore, as we work towards eliminating racism, we recognize that any journey begins with the individual. So, at an individual level, one of the first things you can do is develop your own cultural competence.  

Contact Heather Steranka-Petit for more information on how to bring these workshops to your workplace.


Developing Cultural Competency Workshops for Your Workplace

Becoming a Culturally Competent Individual

Racism in Northeast Ohio: The Economic Impact

Unconscious Bias: Causes, Impact and Remedies

Strategies for Difficult Conversations & Understanding Cross-Cultural Conflict 

Inclusive Leadership: Effectively Leading Diverse Teams 

Becoming a Culturally Competent Organization


The goal of these workshops is for participants to develop cultural competence, resulting in their ability to understand, communicate with, and effectively interact with all people. Develop awareness, increase knowledge, and build skills which will lead to cultural competence empowerment.

Becoming a Culturally Competent Individual  
Cultural competency is critical in today’s global economy.
You will examine:
• The relationship between culture and diversity.
• Individual cultural background, including privilege.
• How cultural values shape our attitudes and beliefs, and affect our behavior.
• Skills for respectful dialogue across differences that can support us at work and in the community.

Racism in Northeast Ohio: The Economic Impact 
We all know racism hurts people. In this program, unearth:
• How racism—such as institutional racism in housing and employment, structural racism, or racially charged sports mascots—has an impact on the community.
• Real community and business examples of race-related challenges and disparities in health, housing, recruiting and retaining talent, attracting businesses to our community, and immigration.

Unconscious Bias: Causes, Impact, and Remedies 
Unconscious bias exists in everyone and affects our daily interactions. You will learn:
• The definition of unconscious bias and the cognitive processes which enable it.
• Stereotype formation and the use of cognitive dissonance to interrupt patterns of bias.
• Common biases and how to explore and uncover some personal biases.
• Tools and strategies to manage behaviors in work and community environments.

Strategies for Difficult Conversations & Understanding Cross-Cultural Conflict  
Many of our most difficult conversations are based on conflict and different methods of managing conflict.
Race and diversity issues are often present just below the surface of many conflicts. Discover ways to:
• Recognize and appropriately respond to differences in conflict style and explore the part culture plays.
• Have a culturally competent approach in order to effectively manage and resolve conflicts.
• Evaluate your preferred method of managing conflict and practice alternate methods.

Inclusive Leadership: Effectively leading Diverse Teams 
To be successful in today’s diverse and changing environment, we need inclusive leaders who are energizing and motivating. Create an environment where each employee feels authentically valued, respected, and engaged in achieving a shared vision. You will identify:
• Ways in which leaders are creating workplaces and teams where all employees feel valued.
• Challenges that diverse teams face and strategies to overcome and manage these challenges.

Becoming a Culturally Competent Organization 
Building on the knowledge and skills developed in the series, participants will explore:
• What cultural competence looks like at the organizational level.
• Topics including cultural competence in the mission statement, policies, and procedures; supporting cultural, ethnic, and linguistic diversity at all levels of the organization; hiring and retention practices; measuring cultural competence.


Heather Steranka-Petit
Manager, Learning Programs

Women's Leadership programs:



In 2016, women now make up 47% of the American workforce and are the equal if not primary breadwinners in 40% of families. 

In 2014, 4.6% of Fortune 500 CEO, 14.6% of Fortune 500 executive officer positions, and 17% of board seats were held by women.

In Northeast Ohio in 2015, from a survey of 85 local employers, only 16.2% of board members, 14.5% of senior management, and 8.5% of suppliers were non-white (GC Partnership, COEI)

In a 2016 Washington Post survey, 88% of black Americans believe there is still work to be done for black Americans to achieve equal rights, while only 53% of white Americans agreed.


We are on a mission for social justice. Get involved!