About Juan-Maria Gallego , PsyD.

Juan was attracted to different cultures very early on.  Born in Spain, he attended a French school, Le Lycée Français D’Alicante, since the age of three.  After spending several summers learning English in Cork, Ireland, he completed his high school in Walled Lake, Michigan, completing his bachelor’s degree at Central Michigan University, and his master’s degree of International Management at Thunderbird School of International Management (Glendale, Arizona).  He led sales and marketing in the Latin American region for many years, moving on to other roles in Europe, Morocco and China. In 2010, he moved with his wife and four daughters to Colorado Springs, Colorado, working in projects as a consultant in Latin America and Hong Kong, as well as diversity training with different law enforcement agencies in Colorado.  Over the last years, Juan has taught marketing and management courses at the undergrad and graduate level at Regis University (Dual Language MBA program) and University of Colorado Colorado Springs (College of Business).  In addition, he works as Leadership Solutions Facilitator for the Center for Creative Leadership (CCL), facilitating leadership programs to global executives.  Juan volunteers as a facilitator with the Illumination project, a program developed by the city of Colorado Springs, the Colorado Springs Police Department  and CCL to promote conversations between the community and law enforcement agencies.

About the Book

Juan wrote The Shadow of Bias on Leadership in a conversational tone to invite other people to think and talk about their own biases.  One of the premises of the book is that we all have biases.  The book includes three parts.  The first part talks about the challenge of our own human complexity and how biases impact our daily life and interactions with others.  We are social animals and we need to understand that we were raised to favor one group over another.  The second part of the book provides a short introduction to the environmental challenges that we regularly faced and that spark our biases and prejudices.  In the third part of the book, we will learn techniques that we can use to improve our own self-awareness and to neutralize the effects of those biases in our professional and personal lives.  The main topics are supported with an array of entertaining, personal, professional and third-party stories to effectively illustrate each point.

Why is it important to understand our own biases?

As community leaders, we need to understand that we all have biases and that those biases filter the way we see the world around us.   The effects of those filters can be minimized through better self-awareness and the implementation of processes designed to neutralize those biases.  As the philosopher Spinoza said in 1676, as leaders we “have to strive not to laugh at human actions, not to weep at them, not to hate them, but to understand them”.  Education is the key to better understanding in any community.

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