This article originally appeared on Nielsen.com.
We recently hosted our fifth-annual Nielsen Employee Resource Group (ERG) Experience Week, also known enERGize Week. Originally started in 2014, enERGize week showcases the value and benefit of ERG membership and engagement globally. At Nielsen, ERGs are the cornerstone of our Diversity & Inclusion (D&I) strategy, specifically fulfilling the retention pillar of our five-prong strategy. We have nine ERGs, and each group is tasked with providing business impact by supporting talent acquisition initiatives, community outreach, and education while driving innovation for the benefit of our clients and our company.
Nielsen enERGize week 2018 kicked off with two globally broadcast town hall discussions from Madrid, Spain, led by our Chief Diversity Officer Angela Talton, who introduced the enERGize 2018 theme: “The Power of We.” This year’s theme aimed to inspire collaboration between ERGs at Nielsen and our clients, embodying one of our core company values: connected.
Our associates spent the week in virtual and in-person workshops on developing effective strategies for communication with diverse teams, fostering mentoring relationships and excelling on the job during times of change. These professional development opportunities, which our ERGs offer throughout the year, positively affect our associates’ careers, allowing them to add new skills and stay engaged with our company priorities and D&I strategy.
To further galvanize our associates’ engagement in ERGs and share our commitment to D&I with important global clients, Angela visited several of our European offices. During her visits to Madrid, Spain; Oxford, U.K.; Warsaw, Poland; and Istanbul, Turkey, Angela met with our associates and leaders to get their perspective on how we can continue to drive ERG engagement, share best practices and identify opportunities for strategic partnership with clients.
Angela also engaged with several important clients during her visits throughout Europe. She spoke on a LEAD Network panel alongside representatives from GlaxoSmithKline (GSK) and Procter & Gamble (P&G) and also visited Coca-Cola’s U.K. office to discuss D&I strategy and how ERGs can drive cross-company collaboration. In addition, she met with the American Chamber of Commerce in Poland, which is a leading voice for international investors in the country and includes 80 companies of the U.S. Fortune 500. Angela ended the week leading a panel discussion in Warsaw with representatives of Facebook and Marie Brizard Wine and Spirits Polska.
“Our ERGs are an essential tool for infusing diversity and inclusion into everything we do both internally and externally. Internally, ERGs provide a platform for our associates to gain visibility, access, and opportunity while assisting with recruitment, retention, and professional development. Externally, ERGs are conduits that open doors to client engagement,” said Angela. “Through our ERGs, we give voice to differences while celebrating innovation and ‘The Power of We’ to cultivate an inclusive culture benefiting not just our own business, but also our clients.”
One of the ways we’re activating the “Power of We” year-round is through mentoring. During the week, we launched a virtual mentoring platform called myMentor, which will facilitate mentor-mentee matches. In addition, we hosted several virtual sessions designed to help mentees make the most of their mentoring relationships. At Nielsen, we encourage mentorship because it is proven to increase employee engagement and allows our associates to Grow With Us—a pillar of the Nielsen employee experience.
Angela’s presence in Europe was designed to exemplify our enERGize 2018 push to increase both awareness of and engagement in our global D&I strategy and ERGs. Our efforts successfully energized our global workforce. Across nearly 100 sessions, we engaged more than 5,600 associates and 19 clients. We created six new ERG chapters (all outside the U.S.) and increased global ERG membership by nearly 600 members.
“Our nine global ERGs simultaneously link our associates to our global D&I strategy, our company priorities, our clients, and the communities where we live and work,” said Myriam Vidalon, VP, Diversity Programs, Nielsen. “It is vital that we energize our associates and educate them on the benefits ERGs have for their careers and our business. ”
Learn more about our ERGs and our global diversity and inclusion strategy.