As CEO, Shilpa Pherwani collaborates with leaders to develop innovative, engaging solutions to dismantle systemic inequities and leverage diversity for success. An organizational psychologist by training, she builds trusting, long-term relationships through deep listening and meeting people where they are.
Pherwani helps her clients—which include American Airlines, Google, ESPN, Microsoft, Xerox, Gannett/USA Today, Sun Life Financial and University of Missouri—push boundaries to creatively move DEI dialogue to the next level while creating a culture of accountability. Her solutions are scalable, global and sustainable.
As an entrepreneur and thought leader, Pherwani has developed a leading proprietary tool for Diversity, Equity and Inclusion (DEI) assessment, the Inclusive Organization Framework, which rates fourteen different areas of organizations to gauge where strategic focus can ensure the most progress.
She also drives behavioral change at the individual level. Under Pherwani’s leadership, IBIS creates thousands of unforgettable learner moments every month. Booming client demand for Interactive Theater and Instructor-Led Training has matched interest in the firm’s award-winning E-Learning on racial equity and unconscious bias.
Her experience as an immigrant from India, which has guided her to value what she brings to the community rather than assimilate to a dominant culture, is a cornerstone she’s impressed upon her own children as well as her business. Since 1999, Pherwani has led IBIS to partner with powerful companies and universities as they run DEI assessments, develop strategic diversity action plans, and create and deliver nimble, ever-changing DEI curriculum.
“I approach DEI with an abundance mentality,” says Pherwani. “Inclusion signals scarcity to some, but the end goal is equity for all. It takes being intentional about culture to make the shift from ‘us versus them’ thinking. I work with clients to transform the workplace environment from one that tolerates differences to one that truly leverages them—where everyone feels a sense of belonging and can ultimately thrive.”
Pherwani is available to speak on topics including Racial Equity, Global Inclusive Leadership Development, Mitigating Systemic Bias Across Organizations, and Cross-Cultural Collaboration.