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FranklinCovey and Simon & Schuster Launch New Book, The Leader's Guide to Unconscious Bias: How to Reframe Bias, Cultivate Connection, and Create High-Performing Teams

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Nov 20, 2020
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Franklin+Covey+Co. (NYSE: FC), a global firm specializing in organizational performance improvement, and Simon & Schuster, today announced the release of the new book, The+Leader%26rsquo%3Bs+Guide+to+Unconscious+Bias%3A+How+to+Reframe+Bias%2C+Cultivate+Connection%2C+and+Create+High-Performing+Teams.

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FranklinCovey and Simon & Schuster Launch New Book, The Leader's Guide to Unconscious Bias: How to Reframe Bias, Cultivate Connection, and Create High-Performing Teams (Photo: Business Wire)

Co-authored by Pamela+Fuller, FranklinCovey Thought Leader, Inclusion and Bias; Mark+Murphy, FranklinCovey Senior Consultant; and Anne+Chow, CEO of AT&T Business and FranklinCovey board member, the book is a timely, must-have guide for leaders, teams and organizations seeking to understand and overcome bias in their workplace to build cultures of diversity, inclusion, and equity.

“The need for this book has long been present,” said Anne Chow, co-author, CEO of AT&T Business. “But it’s never been more timely, as organizations around the world are now confronting their own biases. Addressing bias is one of the most important topics for individuals, organizations and communities to confront — meaningfully, purposefully, and with a desire to listen, learn, engage, and do better. Our book’s focus on unconscious bias and its impact on workplace performance addresses these very issues and serves as an invitation for leaders and organizations to develop and participate in constructive dialogues about inclusion, while implementing actions that drive both progress and performance.”

The+Leader%26rsquo%3Bs+Guide+to+Unconscious+Biasis ideal for leaders and managers as they strive to reframe how they think about and move past pre-conceived ideas or biases. In the book, the authors explain that bias is a natural part of the human condition and an inherent part of how our brains work. But unconscious bias often leaves us unaware of the results which can occur because of biased thinking. It can profoundly affect how we see and experience people, places and things. It influences how we make decisions, engage with others, and respond to various situations and circumstances. Ignoring our biases doesn’t eliminate their consequences, which can severely limit our own professional possibilities and those of our colleagues. We can negatively impact those with whom we work, which in turn affects results and organizational performance.

Unconscious bias can take many forms. It affects our thought processes, reasoning, what we remember, how we make decisions, how we relate to one another, and the talent we recruit, such as a preference for hiring someone because they look like us or have the same background, gender, age, or education. It can impact how we identify potential and who we choose to develop on a team, as we may unintentionally favor certain groups of people, regardless of capability. It might affect employee engagement and turnover, limit talent, and make it challenging for teams to work cross functionally. Unconscious bias can show up in the disappointment of a hiring manager when a candidate for a new position asks about maternity leave, or preferring the application of an Ivy League graduate over one from a state school, or assuming a man is more entitled to speak in a meeting than his female junior colleague.

“This book is our contribution to help advance a more inclusive world, where everyone can name and take responsibility for their own biases, can use empathy and curiosity to more effectively connect with others, and can choose courage to make positive changes at work. Discrimination, racial injustice, and injustice in any form have no place in the workplace or society. This includes race, color, sexual orientation, gender, identity, national origin, disability, age, veteran status, family or marital status, physical appearance, education religious beliefs, and geography. As human beings that are all connected, we can do better,” said Mark Murphy, FranklinCovey Senior Consultant.

The Leader’s Guide to Unconscious Bias is based on enduring principles and practices. It provides a proven framework for leaders at all levels to reframe the nature of bias, build the critical skills needed to transform behaviors, and to constructively address bias to enhance individual, team and organizational performance. The authors offer their unique perspective on the topic with heartfelt, inspiring stories about their experience with unconscious bias. They also provide more than thirty unique tools readers can use to help them overcome their own unconscious bias.

Readers will learn:

  • A framework for making progress on bias
  • How to identify bias in themselves and others with how they think and act in the workplace
  • The common traps that lead to biased thinking and when to pause and more fully consider decisions and behaviors
  • To cultivate deep and meaningful connections between people of varying backgrounds by using empathy and curiosity to expand mutual understanding and improve decision-making
  • To choose courage and engage with care and boldness in addressing the full spectrum of biases that limit people and constrain performance, such as race, gender, disability, sexual-orientation, education, socioeconomic status, and extroversion/introversion
  • To create a workplace culture in which everyone is respected, valued and can thrive and contribute their highest performance

See FranklinCovey On Leadership With Scott Miller Interview with Authors:

As leaders and teams in organizations become more aware of and understand bias, they can address it by noticing and acknowledging their own biases to make progress on seeking, including, and valuing different perspectives. These behaviors build a culture in which individuals can contribute their best thinking and teams cultivate open and effective collaboration.

Pamela Fuller, FranklinCovey Thought Leader, Inclusion and Bias, said, “Leadership cannot be great if it isn’t inclusive, if it leaves anyone behind. In order to achieve results, leaders must ensure that each member of their team can confidently state, ‘I am a valued member of a winning team doing meaningful work in an environment of trust.’ Without inclusion and the sincere intent to explore biases that could be unintentionally excluding some, and therefore limiting performance, this statement cannot occur.”

The co-authors believe that every workplace can achieve its highest performance rate once biases are identified and appropriate action is taken so that employees are allowed to become whole people who are inspired to reach their highest potential. By recognizing unconscious bias and making true understanding and change a priority in the workplace, organizations can mitigate its negative consequences, unlocking the human potential of every person.

The new book bears the same name as FranklinCovey’s leadership solution, Unconscious+Bias%3A+Understanding+Bias+to+Unleash+Potential™. The work session establishes a connection between unconscious bias and individual, team and organizational performance. It provides organizations with a framework for addressing unconscious bias in order to build a culture that values diversity and inclusion. The solution is included in the FranklinCovey+All+Access+Pass®, which provides passholders with unlimited access to FranklinCovey’s entire collection of best-in-class content. Passholders can assemble, integrate and deliver that content in an almost limitless combination through various delivery channels and integrated into existing training solutions. Passholders also have exclusive access to an implementation specialist and other add-on services, such as coaching, to ensure they are unleashing the full scope and power of All Access Pass to achieve their key business objectives.

To learn more about the solution, visit: %3Ci%3EUnconscious+Bias%3A+Understanding+Bias+to+Unleash+Potential%3C%2Fi%3E. For more information about the FranklinCovey All Access Pass, visit: FranklinCovey%26rsquo%3Bs+All+Access+Pass.


Pamela Fuller

Pamela+Fuller is FranklinCovey’s thought leader on unconscious bias, lead architect of its organizational solution, and one of the firm’s top global sales leaders. Pamela served as an architect of FranklinCovey’s Unconscious Bias work session and has delivered that session as well as DEI strategy discussions to thousands of leaders across the globe. She is also responsible for helping clients customize and implement learning and organizational-development solutions to meet their strategic objectives across FranklinCovey’s full catalog of learning solutions. After earning her MBA, Pamela served as a diversity analyst at the U.S. Department of Defense, focusing on human capital planning, diversity training, and statistical workforce analysis. She began her career in nonprofit fundraising and advocacy, always connected to inclusion and the voice of marginalized groups. Pamela currently lives in South Florida with her husband and children, where they spend their free time exploring all manner of superheroes.

Mark Murphy

Mark+Murphy is a FranklinCovey Senior Consultant who has facilitated content successfully to clients worldwide for almost three decades. Through his own life experiences and extensive global travel, Mark is passionate about inclusion and bias and is an expert in helping clients create diversity in their cultures. He has helped organizations build effective and inclusive cultures in the public sector, the Fortune 500 companies, and the U.S. government. Mark is an expert in helping clients drive culture change. He works with clients to develop and execute strategies aligned to the client’s mission and vision that help drive large scale behavior change all the way to the frontline. Mark is phenomenal at developing leaders and individual contributors so organizations can meet their goals and reach new levels of effectiveness. Mark grew up in Colorado and has called Dallas home since 1994.

Anne Chow

Anne+Chow is Chief Executive Officer of AT&T Business. She leads an organization of over 30,000 employees responsible for serving nearly 3 million business customers across the globe representing over $35B in revenues. With decades in the industry, Anne has led numerous global organizations through major transformations and developed countless role model relationships with clients, partners, and colleagues along the way. She’s known for being a professional and personal trailblazer and champion and catalyst for change in numerous circles. In addition to building world-class teams with winning cultures, some of Anne’s other passions include education, diversity and inclusion, advancing women in technology, and cultivating next-generation leaders. Most recently, Anne was named to Fortune’s 2020 Most Powerful Women’s List. With a Master of Business Administration with distinction from The Johnson School at Cornell University and a Bachelor of Science degree and Master of Engineering degree in Electrical Engineering from Cornell, Anne is also a graduate of the Pre-College Division of the Juilliard School of Music. She is also a proud board member of FranklinCovey.


Franklin+Covey+Co. (NYSE: FC) is a global, public company specializing in organizational performance improvement. We help organizations and individuals achieve results that require a change in human behavior. Our expertise is in seven areas: leadership, execution, productivity, trust, sales performance, customer loyalty and education. FranklinCovey clients have included 90 percent of the Fortune 100, more than 75 percent of the Fortune 500, thousands of small and mid-sized businesses, as well as numerous government entities and educational institutions. FranklinCovey has more than 100 direct and partner offices providing professional services in over 160 countries and territories.


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