Recruiting and Retaining Women: Strength through Diversity

Recruiting and Retaining Women: Strength through Diversity
Duration: 60 Minutes
Module 1Module 1
Recorded on: 2022-03-15
Unit 1Presentation Materials: Recruiting and Retaining Women
Unit 2Transcript: Recruiting and Retaining Women
Unit 3Workbook: Recruiting and Retaining Women
Unit 4Recording: Recruiting and Retaining Women

Women have a lot to bring to the table. Unfortunately, a lot of women are not given the opportunity to be the best that they can be and flourish in their careers. This session hopes to shed light on the reason why women tend to be underrepresented in helping professions and what organizations and leaders can do to attract women into their workplace and set them up for success.

This session’s instructor is Brenda Dietzman. Brenda has almost three decades of criminal justice experience – working on both law enforcement and corrections. She is currently leading Wayfinder Consulting, where she provides evidence-based training solutions and inspiring presentations on select topics including diversity, developing women leaders, and leadership across the US and around the world.

Specifics of the webinar are about:

  • Issues women face in the professional field particularly their underrepresentation in public safety and law enforcement and how the pandemic positioned women at a disadvantage professionally.
  • The benefits of having more women in the workplace backed by research in terms of productivity, profitability, reputation, collaboration, recruitment, and retention.
  • Considerations to help attract more women in the workplace in terms of recruitment.
    • Transparency in terms of the salary, benefits, potential for growth within the organization, the agency’s mission, and policies relevant to women.
    • Understanding how long, detailed list of job specifications and specific words and qualifications can deter women from applying to a role.
    • Establishing a clear process for applicants to know the progress of their application.
    • Leveraging storytelling in recruitment materials to illustrate what the agency is about and what the job entails, and appeal to the people that the organization is trying to recruit.
    • Approaches and tools that may be used to facilitate recruitment, target recruitment efforts and engage with potential applicants and recruits.
  • Factors to take into account during the hiring and training process to set female applicants up for success.
    • Provide guidance to recruits by demonstrating tests during the application process so they may be able to prepare and practice and be more likely to succeed.
    • Consider Female-Only Training to acknowledge how women are different from men, capitalize on women’s strengths, and set them up for better outcomes.
    • Evaluating how the hiring and training process is screening the applicants and how it can be improved to make it more culturally and gender competent.
  • Retention strategies that address the workforce’s common pain points to ensure that high-quality employees stay.
    • Ensuring adequate pay and providing affordable health care, mental health support, childcare, and meals.
    • Providing means towards self-improvement and self-care through gym memberships, continuing studies tuition reimbursement, and mental health and wellness programs, among others.
    • Accommodations for women in the workplace as lactation rooms, child care, and relaxed yet functional and professional dress codes and uniforms for women.
    • Various and flexible scheduling options to be able to accommodate the different roles and stages in a woman’s life.
    • Conducting stay interviews to survey why people choose to work and stay in an organization and using the insights for recruitment and retention efforts.
    • Equipping first-line supervisors with the training, competencies, and tools to become successful and influence those that they directly work with.
    • Learning to embrace diversity by leading, mentoring, sponsoring, and advocating for people who don’t look like you.
  • Some of the hurdles that women face in their careers related to emotional housekeeping, microaggressions, higher diversity service loads, office housekeeping, and the broken wrung theory.
  • The value of leaders continually learning about the people they work with and their different backgrounds, motivations, strengths, and areas for improvement.
  • The seemingly minute but critical role of language and semantics in promoting allyship to diverse groups.
  • Understanding the challenges that come with being an “only” and how this drives women and other minorities to leave a job.
  • The organizations’ and leaders’ responsibility to listen to and value women and consider their insights in decision making and problem-solving.

Points clarified during the Q&A include:

  • Utilizing QR codes on business cards.
  • Reviewing whether specific activities in the physical agility test are critical for the job.
  • Leveraging peer support programs for Wellness and mental health purposes.
  • The importance of representation in recruitment materials.
  • Balancing competency and skills requirements vis-à-vis diversity requirements during recruitment.


Other Webinars with this Speaker:


Or click here to view and register for other upcoming Leadership webinars and recordings on the JCH Platform.


Resources and Handouts


Audience Comments

  • “Retention. Addressing the training of first-line supervisors.”– Dawn
  • “Keep in mind who you are trying to recruit and retain. Be an ally, listen, include.” — Deedee
  • “Employers need to look at flexible hours, remote, as well as possible assist with child care. This all would help with women in the workforce. Especially single mothers.” — Theresa
  • “I liked the emphasis on maternal leave and policies and such. I never thought of that and that is something my department is not doing.” — Mandi
  • “That people love to be seen and heard for who they are. That there is value in listening and showing concern for the problems affecting many of us in the workplace. True change starts from within but actions speak louder than words.” — Monika
  • “Love the “Stay interview” concept and then cultivate/promote what works!” — Audra
  • “How important it is to have people like the applicants around to help make them comfortable.” — Roxanne
  • “Options for widening our search for hiring women. Viewing stay-at-home moms in a different light.” — Sandy
  • “The speaker was awesome. Great information that I will apply at my job even though I am not presently experiencing any issues at work.” — lezza
  • “What is important NOW? Been an officer for 20+ years and it is good to hear the changes and adaptive process that shows interest in the people, not just the job. Great information. ” — Hannah
  • “I liked how she made it clear that the goal wasn’t to hire an unqualified woman over a qualified man, but to get the best candidate possible by encouraging women to apply.” — Laura
  • “Reinforced some of the good work we have already been doing and highlighted some ideas we have not yet thought of – Brenda is a rock star!” — Jeff
  • “The sometimes unintentional biases of not including women, but the awareness that may make the difference. Brenda’s perspective is shared by so many women and has impacted and equipped them tools to empower their worth.” — Deborah
  • “The presenter is awesome, as always. Thank her and thank you!” — Detective
  • “This was fantastic! I have been trying to figure out solutions for retention and recruiting women, so thank you, Brenda!” — Alexandria



Additional Resources
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Online Course: Purposeful, Authentic Leadership
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After the Webinar: Recruiting and Retaining Women. Q&A with Brenda Dietzman
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