The Women in Leadership Institute - Linkage

November 13-16, 2017
Dallas, TX

Where opportunity and
inspiration meet.

Accelerating the development of women leaders since 1997.
Changing the landscape of leadership. Changing lives.


If companies that financially perform best have the greatest numbers of women in leadership positions, why do women continue to lag behind in assuming leadership and board roles?

Projections show that at the current rate of advancement, women and men won’t be equally represented in leadership until 2085! The harsh reality is that the talent pipeline is leaking at all levels, and women just aren’t stepping into enough key roles that would allow them and their companies to realize their full potential. Why is that and what can we do, as a collective group, to help women leaders advance more quickly in the workplace?  

Join us at Linkage’s Women in Leadership Institute™ in Dallas, Texas, on November 13-16, 2017 to dig deeper into these questions and challenges, and to be a part of the thinking and potential solutions.

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Visit our resource page for the latest thought leadership on the subject of women in leadership, both at an indvidual and organizational level, from Linkage and our faculty members.

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The Executive Forum for REAL Change

Co-hosted in Dallas with WIL on November 14-15, 2017, the Executive Forum for REAL Change is a unique offering designed for executives committed to creating and sustaining inclusive leadership practices. As a participant, you will focus on how to help your leaders model inclusive leadership, and on best practices for building a pipeline of women in your leadership ranks.  

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Sponsorship Bootcamp

Sponsorship is one of the most meaningful strategies organizations can formalize to realize the full potential of their female talent. Co-hosted with WIL on November 16, 2017, the Sponsorship Bootcamp teaches best practices for building a formal sponsorship program, and a proven five-step process to get started. This half-day intensive has been designed for leaders currently serving as sponsors, or executives committed to accelerating the advancement of women.

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The Women in Leadership Institute is designed to engage and inspire high-performing women leaders toward accelerating their leadership abilities. Past attendees span Fortune 1000 companies, nonprofits, and global government agencies and include women team members, managers, directors, presidents, CEOs, and every level in between.


Get Started Before You Begin

The Women in Leadership Institute sessions are filled with usable knowledge and insights that become even more valuable when leaders have a better understanding of their own strengths and opportunities. Each Institute participant will complete a 360° assessment prior to attending the Institute to gain better insights into her own strengths and key development areas. Use your assessment results to plan your time and areas of focus so that you can maximize results and push your own potential.


Extend Value, Fast-Track Success

Build on your experience at the Institute with optional one-on-one coaching sessions with one of Linkage’s expert coaches. You’ll discuss your individual Women in Leadership Assessment results, create an Individual Development Plan, track your progress over time, and receive powerful tools to start and maintain your focused leadership growth. Think of your coach as your personal guide to fast-tracked success and development.

Executive coaching sessions are available in 3-, 6-, 9-, or 12-month terms—call +1.781.402.5555 for details.


Keynotes, Competencies, and Camaraderie

Through over 25 years of research, we’ve found that there are three core developmental areas that women leaders need to effectively drive results across all levels of an organization: leading authentically, leading others, and leading the future. This finding is at the core of our Women in Leadership Institute Model™, which provides the foundation for your Institute experience.

Explore 6 competencies from the model and learn from world-class leaders in exhilarating keynote sessions and competency-based workshops. You’ll delve into influencing change, building a brand, coaching, and leading strategically, to name just a few.


More than Standard Sessions

Beyond the intense curriculum, you’ll have plenty of opportunities to connect and network with your peers. Not to mention inspiring keynotes from leaders and world-renowned educators spanning business, arts, and academia.

You’ll also have the opportunity to reflect on your own experiences and gain expert insight during your daily small group Learning Team sessions with others who have similar roles, years of experience, and leadership responsibilities. 


Keep It Going

During the Institute, you’ll undoubtedly gain new insights and new tools while expanding your own competencies and strengths. But following the Institute, you also gain access to the Linkage Year of Learning™ to continue your growth.

As an Institute participant, you’ll receive a full year of access to the LinkageNetwork™, an online learning environment featuring webinars, broadcasts, and content designed to expand on the competencies addressed at the Institute. In addition, you can visit our resource page that features the latest thought leadership from Linkage and faculty members.

institute faculty: #firstname# #lastname#
Susan MacKenty Brady

Susan MacKenty Brady

Institute Co-chair; EVP, Global Programs, Linkage

Susan MacKenty Brady is the Executive Vice President of Global Program Strategy & Development at Linkage. Susan is an expert speaker, coach, and facilitator, and has extensive experience in building executives and leaders across all levels. Her coaching philosophy rests on the premise that behavior change comes from understanding the specific behaviors that may be preventing leaders from operating at their highest level of performance and then focusing on these behaviors in a deep and practical way. Susan is well known for her success designing and implementing targeted leadership initiatives focused on advancing women leaders. She is a contributing author of the book Enlightened Power: How Women Are Transforming the Path to Leadership. She published The 30-Second Guide to Coaching Your Inner Critic and co-authored Coaching Your Inner Critic on

Brené Brown

Brené Brown

Researcher; Storyteller; Author

Dr. Brené Brown is a research professor at the University of Houston where she holds
the Huffington Foundation – Brené Brown Endowed Chair at The Graduate College of
Social Work.

She has spent the past sixteen years studying courage, vulnerability, shame, and
empathy and is the author of four #1 New York Times bestsellers – The Gifts of
Imperfection, Daring Greatly, Rising Strong
, and Braving the Wilderness: The Quest for
True Belonging and The Courage to Stand Alone
(Fall 2017).

Brené’s TED talk – The Power of Vulnerability – is one of the top five most viewed TED
talks in the world with over 30 million views.

In addition to her research and writing, Brené is the Founder of BRAVE LEADERS INC -
an organization that brings empirically based courage building programs to teams,
leaders, entrepreneurs, change makers, and culture shifters.

Karen Cvitkovich

Karen Cvitkovich

Speaker, Author, Facilitator, and Consultant

Karen’s passion is collaborating with clients and partners to ensure successful business results between international counterparts, leaders and multinational teams. Her holistic approach brings her beyond culture, and into the intricacies of how international business is carried-out, allowing her to help solve complex people, process, and systemic global challenges.

Carla Harris

Carla Harris

Institute Co-chair; Vice Chairman, Managing Director at Morgan Stanley; Author

Carla Harris is a Vice Chairman, Wealth Management, Managing Director and Senior Client Advisor at Morgan Stanley. Ms. Harris has extensive industry experience in the technology, media, retail, telecommunications, transportation, industrial, and healthcare sectors. In August 2013, Ms. Harris was appointed by President Barack Obama to chair the National Women’s Business Council. Ms. Harris was recently named to Fortune Magazine’s list of “The 50 Most Powerful Black Executives in Corporate America,” U.S. Bankers “Top 25 Most Powerful Women in Finance” (2009, 2010, 2011), Black Enterprise’s “Top 75 Most Powerful Women in Business” (2010), Black Enterprise Magazine’s “Top 75 African Americans on Wall Street” (2006 – 2011), Essence Magazine’s list of “The 50 Women Who Are Shaping the World,” and “Woman of the Year 2004” by the Harvard Black Men’s Forum and in 2011 by the Yale Black Men’s Forum. Ms. Harris is also an author and gospel singer, and intensively committed to and involved in her community. 

The Second City Works

The Second City Works

B2B side of The Second City, world’s leading comedy theatre

Second City Works is the B2B side of The Second City, the world’s leading comedy theatre and school of improvisation. The need to thrive amid change requires agility, speed, a willingness to fail and the ability to co-create with clients. These are all tenets of improvisation and Second City Works excels at bringing them to life for businesses.

We use improvisation and comedy to elevate messages so that they are heard. We help companies engage their workforce to win over customers. In short, we make work better.

Tara Swart

Tara Swart

Neuroscientist; Leadership Coach; Author

Tara Swart is a neuroscientist, leadership coach, award winning author and medical doctor. Tara works with individuals, teams and companies to get the best out of their brains through neuroscience, helping leaders in business to achieve a competitive edge by understanding and improving the physical condition of their brains. She is the only top-tier leadership coach with both a PHD in neuroscience and medical career as a psychiatrist. Her role as Senior Lecturer at MIT ensures that she remains at the forefront of the latest developments in her sector. Tara sits on five advisory boards and councils, and is co-author of the award-winning book, Neuroscience for Leadership: Harnessing the Brain Gain Advantage, part of The Neuroscience of Business series.

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day 1Monday, November 13


Opening Remarks

Keynote: Susan MacKenty Brady on Being Aware

Assessment Review: Unlocking Your Best Insights

Learning Teams

Networking Session

day 2Tuesday, November 14


Keynote: Brene Brown on Being Bold

Coffee Break

Competency-Based Learning Sessions


Competency-Based Learning Sessions

Keynote: Second City Works on Connected

Networking & Ice Cream Social

Learning Teams

day 3Wednesday, November 15


Keynote: Karen Cvitkovich on Global Connectedness

Coffee Break

Competency-Based Learning Sessions


Keynote: Tara Swart on Clarity

Wellness Session

Executive Impact Award Panel on Inspiring

Learning Teams

day 4Thursday, November 16

Breakfast in Competency-Based Learning Session

Coffee Break

Learning Teams

Keynote: Carla Harris on Being Influential

Closing Comments

Premier Partner

Dentsply Sirona FedEx First American Lenovo McKesson Oracle Parexel TEKsystems Toyota 

Institute Partner

American Family Insurance Constellation Brands DotFoods FreddieMac Hyster-Yale Group LPL Financial Synchrony Financial Disney

1-4 participants: $3,495/person
5-7 participants: $3,295/person
8-11 participants: $3,095/person
12-15 participants: $2,895/person
16+ participants: $2,695/person

Executive Forum for REAL Change: $3,295/person 

Sponsorship Bootcamp: $995/person

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Omni Dallas Hotel

Hotel Accommodations

Omni Dallas Hotel
555 S Lamar Street
Dallas, TX 75202 USA
Phone: +1.214.744.6664

Hotel rooms are not included in the Institute tuition. A block of rooms is being held at the Omni Dallas Hotel at a reduced rate for Institute participants. Discounted rooms are available on a first-come, first-served basis. To benefit from the Institute rate, you must act by October 20, 2017, and mention the Linkage Women in Leadership Institute when making your reservation.

Enrollment Policy
  1. Payment: Full tuition must be received in US funds. Group reservations will be billed to the primary contact unless otherwise specified.
  2. Cancellation: A $350 administrative fee will be applied to any cancellation at any time. After October 2, 2017, cancellation of any and all registrations—including “no shows”—is subject to the full Institute fee. An organization may substitute one paid participant for another at any time with no additional fees or charges.


Frequently Asked Questions

What is a typical day like at the Institute?
The days are filled with speakers, interactive learning team sessions, and networking opportunities. Importantly, the Institute is not a passive listening environment—we prefer for active participation to create a completely immersive experience. Because of your active role in the Institute, we suggest that you plan to be completely removed from work while on site—this will help you to get the most out of your experience.  
What is the difference between an Institute and other conferences?
Our Institutes are all based on competency models designed from years of market research. We draw the parallel to an accelerated university program, exploring a semester’s worth of information in a few days. The days are intense and require each participant’s full attention to ensure the maximum benefit. Prior to the event participants complete an online assessment designed to measure their proficiency in each competency—their assessment results influence their learning team placement.
What is a learning team?
Learning teams are small, facilitator-led groups that meet at designated times during the Institute to discuss the content from the sessions and how participants can apply key concepts to their own roles as leaders. Prior to the event, each attendee completes an assessment; Linkage then organizes learning teams based on individuals’ assessment results, taking into consideration each attendee’s title, function, and years of experience.
Will I be in a learning team with my colleagues?
Some organizations send a team and keep them together for the on-site experience, while others elect to have participants experience the Institute as individual leaders. Both experiences offer different benefits. For organizations that send an intact team, the group is able to view the Institute through the lens of a real-world opportunity or event from their organization. Alternately, organizations that choose to have team members dispersed across the learning teams benefit from exposing their leaders to a diverse group of peers with a variety of experiences and viewpoints.
Why do I complete an assessment before arriving at the Institute?
The assessment serves as the basis for the Institute experience, guiding participants’ placement in a learning team and individual learning tracks.
Why do I have to complete my assessment by a specific date?
In order to customize each participant’s on-site experience, all assessments must be completed by the date given in the confirmation email.
Is there a dress code?
Institute attire is business casual. We suggest that participants wear comfortable shoes and dress in layers, as the day’s program will move between rooms in the hotel and the temperature can vary. We will also be offering optional early morning yoga classes on Tuesday and Wednesday so please be sure to bring comfortable exercise clothing if you’d like to participate.  
What if I have dietary restrictions?
Please notify us at if someone in your party has special dietary needs. Participants should also identify themselves to a member of the wait staff on site at each meal.