Diversity and Inclusiveness has been a hot topic of recent years due to the apparent lack of opportunity, effects of social dominance theory, and low lack of women leadership at the highest levels of the organization. As an advocate for diversity and inclusion practices, I’ve been happy to see great instances of diversity and 3 organizations that I would like to highlight for everyone.
The first is Comcast NBCUniversal:
Comcast has amazing diversity throughout all levels of the organization up to the senior leadership. According to the Chairman and CEO Brian Roberts in their 2018 Diversity report, Comcast states “diversity is not a program with a beginning and an end, it’s a business imperative…” (Comcast NBCUniversal, 2018) This clearly shows in their numbers, 52% of all employees report to a woman or person of color as of this report. (Comcast NBCUniversal, 2018) Furthermore, N. Bird Runningwater the Director of Native American and Indigenous programs at the Sundance Institute stated “not only do they welcome our perspectives, but they have also ensured that we have a seat at the table” (Comcast NBCUniversal, 2018) Having diversity at the table, brings about a different viewpoint that you can only get from having people of differing backgrounds and cultures. Also, as seen in the Northouse text, different cultures view leadership completely differently (Northouse, 2016) and it’s important to have different views of leadership across an organization.
The second company I’d like to discuss is Ernst & Young (EY):
As a former employee of EY, I know how important diversity is to this particular organization. Like Comcast, EY says “our cultural diversity continuum is our roadmap to success” (Ernst & Young, LLP, 2019) During my tenure at EY, they recently promoted and named the first female US Chairman and Americas Managing Partner, Kelly Grier. This was an amazing testament to EY’s commitment to developing and promoting the best in the highest positions of the organization. Ms. Grier was experienced, developed, mentored and was well prepared to step through the glass ceiling and into this position.
Finally, a smaller and less know company, my current firm:
This firm, while having challenges with diversity at the highest levels of the organization has recently set up a women’s leadership network to not only address ways to overcome these challenges and promote developmental opportunities for women but they held a very successful diversity and inclusion panel. This panel brought awareness of some of the barriers to diversity and the real look and feel of diversity. Where a lot of misconceptions occur about diversity being about race relations, this panel dispelled those myths and really discussed the gritty of how minor subconscious actions can lead to big diversity issues. This is a start and I hope that many other company’s do their part to educate the broader workforce about diversity, what it is and how we can overcome barriers to a true diverse workforce and leadership team.
Comcast NBCUniversal. (2018). 2018 Diversity and Inclusion Report. Philadelphia: Comcast.
Ernst & Young, LLP. (2019). Diversity and Inclusiveness. Retrieved from EY Building a better working world: https://www.ey.com/us/en/about-us/our-people-and-culture/diversity-and-inclusiveness
Northouse, P. G. (2016). Leadership: Theory and Practice (7th Ed. ed.). Thousand Oaks: Sage Publications.