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Advancing Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion Through Learning and Leadership

Culture change depends on changes in behavior and beliefs. Training and learning are essential to that transformation.

Our foundational training helps to create a common language and a basic level of understanding about diversity, equity, and inclusion. We build on this by providing our employees with the tools and opportunities to increase self-awareness, as well as awareness of others and respect for their differences, fostering the ability to acknowledge our potential blind spots and biases towards those differences, and raising accountability and ownership to sustain an environment of mutual respect. As we continue to work through the pandemic and all of the changes brought on by COVID-19, with nearly half our workforce shifting to remote work, we fully leverage digital platforms to ensure compliance, connect with our employees, and provide training in an array of learning forums focused on diversity, equity, and inclusion.

Highlights

  • Unconscious Bias Series We expanded and opened our trainings around implicit and explicit bias and microaggressions to all employees. Our biases influence how we view the world and show value for others around us. The sessions cover topics such as blind spots and managing perceptual filters, broadening perspective to avoid similarity bias, and defining microaggressions.
  • Leadership Development Program: Unconscious Bias in the Talent Management Process In an interactive session, managers learn how bias can impact daily management decisions and create potential barriers to inclusion related to how they view people when recruiting, interviewing, and hiring; engaging and communicating; and managing and developing.
  • Psychological Safety Participants learn the importance of psychological safety and how to identify strategies and concrete, meaningful steps to foster an environment where employees feel a sense of appreciation and belonging at work.
  • Equal Employment Opportunity Training To ensure a workplace of compliance, equity, and respect, where appropriate workplace behaviors are reinforced, we offered programs such as The Inclusive Workplace and Sexual Harassment Prevention.
  • Courageous Conversations, D&I Playbook Vol. 2.0 Designed to support leaders in facilitating ongoing dialogue to connect across differences, this session allows leaders and their teams to engage in courageous conversations that address barriers to inclusion, foster trust, and encourage collaboration, with the goal of building more authentic relationships.
  • ConnectorSpace This recently introduced virtual forum provides opportunities for employees to connect and engage in discussions to learn about other areas in the company and grow their networks.
  • ReaderSpace With a goal of fostering virtual learning and connection through book discussions, we launched three reading tracks that provided opportunities to enhance personal leadership skills and business acumen.

Connecting Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion Throughout the Company

The success of any culture-change initiative requires the commitment, support, and engagement of the company’s leadership team. Our leaders own the responsibility for creating a diverse, equitable, and inclusive environment that enables everyone to feel valued, respected, and that they belong. Across the company, our leaders continue to put our strategy into action each day by supporting local employee efforts.

Highlights

  • As a signatory member of CEO Action for Diversity & Inclusion, Chief Executive Officer Tim Cawley, along with Orange & Rockland Utilities President Bob Sanchez, joined with more than 2,000 peers from the world’s leading companies and universities to advance DEI across their organizations. They heard from speakers and explored diversity, equity, and inclusion through the lens of Environmental, Social, and Governance (ESG), with a specific focus on data and transparency. Each CEO signed a pledge to create a more diverse, inclusive, and equitable workforce and:
    • Cultivate environments that support open dialogue on complex—and often difficult—conversations around diversity, equity, and inclusion
    • Implement and expand unconscious bias education and training
    • Share best-known diversity, equity, and inclusion programs and initiatives—as well as those that have been unsuccessful
    • Engage boards of directors when developing and evaluating diversity, equity, and inclusion strategies
  • Through CEO Action for Diversity and Inclusion, we continued our participation in the CEO Action for Racial Equity Fellowship Program. The aim of this program is to identify, develop, and promote scalable and sustainable public policies and corporate engagement strategies that will advance racial equity, address social injustice, and improve societal well-being.
  • The Executive Diversity & Inclusion Council remained engaged in advancing policy and procedure changes, hosting employee forums focused on contemporary social issues and cultural awareness, and providing leadership support for our many Diversity, Equity & Inclusion networks.
  • To support active engagement in the ongoing dialogue, awareness, and celebration of diversity, we developed the D&I Playbook Volume 2.0: Connecting Across Differences. This step-by-step guide helps managers to facilitate conversations to address barriers to inclusion, foster trust, and collaborate, with the goal of building more authentic relationships.

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