This sixth annual meeting of Nielsen’s Employee Resource Groups (ERGs) was held in Chicago in March. Entitled “Progressing to Business Impact,” the summit allowed leaders representing all seven Nielsen ERGs – HOLA (Hispanic Organization of Leaders in Action), SABLE (Sustaining Active Black Leadership and Empowerment), PRIDE (Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, Transgender & Allies), AAL (Asian Americans Link), ADEPT (Abled and Disabled Employees Partnering Together), WIN (Women in Nielsen), and SERV (Support and Employee Resources for Veterans) –to collaborate face-to-face with their global counterparts from Canada, Turkey, the United Kingdom, Argentina and Ghana.
Launched in 2006, Nielsen’s ERGs have benefitted the organization by engaging and educating employees, assisting with recruitment and retention, providing professional development opportunities, and organizing community outreach initiatives. To support their objectives and alignment with overall Company strategy, ERG Leaders and Executive Sponsors from around the world are invited to an annual Employee Resource Group Leadership Summit.
The summit began with a welcome from host, Sherri Dublin, Director of Diversity Programs, and a presentation on ERG accomplishments, including: Hiring our Heroes recruitment career fairs, successful client-focused Diverse Intelligence Series (DIS) events, tutoring sessions with Nsena/Junior Achievement, an LGBT Entertainment Media Mixer and community outreach collaborations with City Harvest, Special Olympics and Toys for Tots.
Angela Talton, SVP, Global Diversity and Inclusion, outlined Nielsen’s Diversity & Inclusion strategy and plan for evolving the ERGs in 2014. She then awarded each leader with a Gold Medal of excellence (given this was an Olympic year) for their many accomplishments in 2013. Angela also moderated a panel featuring Pam McElvane, CEO of Diversity MBA magazine and Nielsen’s ERG Executive Sponsors. The panelists discussed the many ways ERG members exhibit leadership and how the groups can evolve to help solve business unit problems.
Other Nielsen leaders presented an inside look at their business units and how they thought ERGs fit into Nielsen’s overall growth strategy. Members from Nielsen’s External Advisory Councils were also in attendance and offered an outside perspective.
Nielsen CEO Mitch Barns, meeting with ERG leaders on the second day, shared key learnings about leadership, professional development and diversity. “Diversity & Inclusion is key to the innovation, growth, and strength of Nielsen,” Barns said.
Nielsen’s ERGs operate with a framework of Four Key Diversity Focus Areas:
- Recruiting the best talent possible with a lens toward diversity. It is imperative that we all seek candidates who will enhance Nielsen’s performance in the marketplace.
- Professional Development allows our employees to continuously learn and develop in their careers.
- Community Outreach efforts align to our corporate social responsibility program, Nielsen Cares. Each of our ERGs support the community outreach initiatives of Nielsen Cares, External Affairs, and Supplier Diversity.
- Engagement ensures that our employees, clients and all stakeholders are informed about the multicultural insight that Nielsen provides and encourages celebrating diverse cultural backgrounds – a key to furthering our diversity & inclusion efforts.
Angela Talton wrapped up the Summit by thanking the ERG Leaders and Executive Sponsors and citing Gandhi’s quote: “Be the change you wish to see in the world.”