Six Keys for Making Employee Network Groups Work

December 13, 2008 - by: Diversity Insight 0 COMMENTS

Margaret Rivera, AstraZeneca’s senior manager of diversity, helps oversee 16 successful employee network groups. Here are her tips for making such affinity groups work:

1. Don’t force it. “Companies . . . should understand that the most successful employee groups often start out as grassroots organizations — they are volunteer organizations,” she counsels.

2. Make sure they’re tied into the overall diversity strategy.

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December Dilemna: Do’s and Don’ts

December 13, 2008 - by: Diversity Insight 1 COMMENTS

The December Dilemma: practicing inclusion during the winter holidays. The top religious accommodation companies have made in the past 12 months? Considering different religious beliefs of employees when planning holiday-related events, according to the Society for Human Resource Management’s (SHRM) “Religion and Corporate Culture Accommodating Religious Diversity Survey.”

Taking differing beliefs into account is never more necessary than in December. “For our many colleagues who celebrate Christmas, December is a time filled with happy reminders as well as the usual daily pressures. But for those who don’t celebrate, that same drumbeat of Christmas images and messages can be uncomfortable, both in and out of the office,” says Joyce Dubensky, executive vice president of the Tanenbaum Center for Interreligious Understanding.

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Categories: Feature

Four Employees Win $19 Million in Race Case

December 13, 2008 - by: Diversity Insight 0 COMMENTS

A federal jury in Portland recently awarded $19 million to four African-American former employees of Asbury Automotive Group, LLC ? the former corporate owner of Thomason Toyota in Gladstone. The workers alleged they were forced to endure a hostile, racially charged work environment.

Four salesmen, Carlos Barfield, Marcus Arnold, Jahaeel Hardy, and Kent Paul, sued Asbury Automotive in 2006. They alleged that managers and other workers at the dealership created a racially hostile atmosphere and that management failed to take action to remedy the situation. According to the four men, managers and coworkers used highly offensive and hostile language in their presence, including terms such as “redneck,” “nigger,” “black slave,” and “half black bastard.”

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Categories: Legal News

Which Religious Holidays Are Recognized the Most?

December 13, 2008 - by: Diversity Insight 0 COMMENTS

Christmas Day — 99%
Christmas Eve —  44%
Good Friday —  29%
Easter — 19%
Yom Kippur —  2%
Ash Wednesday —  1%
Passover —  1%
Hanukkah — 1%
Rosh Hashanah —  1%
Other —  4%

Source: Religion and Corporate Culture Survey Report
(SHRM, 2008)

Categories: Just the Facts

Recruiting Teenagers: Program Lures Future Talent

November 16, 2008 - by: Diversity Insight 0 COMMENTS

The early bird catches the worm — and the best employees.

At least that’s the thinking of the Association of Corporate Counsel and the Street Law organization, which are working together to encourage young people of color to extend their educations and consider law-related careers. Among other things, their Corporate Legal Diversity Pipeline program pairs teachers at high schools with corporate lawyers to provide law-related education, role models, and mentors.

“The ACC/Street Law Diversity Pipeline program is [a] wonderful initiative that targets diverse high school students and offers them positive contact with corporate lawyers and insight into the challenging and engaging work that they do,” says Laura Stein, ACC’s outgoing board chair and senior vice president and general counsel of the Clorox Co.

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Diversity Programs: Not Just About “Soft” Skills

November 16, 2008 - by: Celeste Blackburn 0 COMMENTS

Diversity programs have moved beyond sensitivity training.

A new survey of more than 2,500 senior HR and training executives revealed a wide variety of diversity initiatives and program elements. The most common? Leadership development.

“Just a few years ago, diversity programs usually meant just awareness training. Those programs were separate from other hard and soft leadership skills training sponsored by the chief learning officer,” says Verna Ford, an executive consultant with Novations Group, the Boston-based consulting firm that commissioned the study.

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Categories: Diversity Trends

Diversity Programs: Not Just About “Soft” Skills

November 16, 2008 - by: Diversity Insight 0 COMMENTS

Diversity programs have moved beyond sensitivity training.

A new survey of more than 2,500 senior HR and training executives revealed a wide variety of diversity initiatives and program elements. The most common? Leadership development.

“Just a few years ago, diversity programs usually meant just awareness training. Those programs were separate from other hard and soft leadership skills training sponsored by the chief learning officer,” says Verna Ford, an executive consultant with Novations Group, the Boston-based consulting firm that commissioned the study.

read more…

Categories: Diversity Trends

International Day: Give Thanks and Decrease Turnover

November 16, 2008 - by: Diversity Insight 0 COMMENTS

November is anchored by the Thanksgiving holiday, but it also contains the United Nations’ International Day for Tolerance  making it the perfect time to thank your diverse group of employees, and celebrate their differences.

That’s what Henry Schein’s Indianapolis Distribution Center does every year around this time. “In 2004, in part arising out of a comment from one of our Team Schein members, we held our first ‘International Thanksgiving Day’ with the intent of paying tribute to the exceptionally strong workforce our diversity has provided us,” says Jay Price, director of operations at the distribution center.

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Cell Company to Pay $435,000 for Unequal Wages

November 16, 2008 - by: Diversity Insight 0 COMMENTS

A New York-based company that refurbishes cell phones at its factory in Long Island will pay $435,000 to settle a wage discrimination and retaliation suit brought by the U.S. Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC). The agency charged that First Wireless Group, Inc., engaged in a pattern or practice of race and/or national origin discrimination against a class of Hispanic workers by paying them less for doing the same job as Asian employees and by firing those who complained about the unlawful pay disparity.

According to the EEOC’s lawsuit, after a group of former Hispanic employees became aware that Asian employees were being paid $1.50 to $2.00 or more per hour for performing the same work, they circulated a petition asking for equal pay. Rather than looking into the employees’ complaints, the EEOC said, First Wireless responded by firing them and others they believed were involved.

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Categories: Legal News

American Indian and Alaska Native Heritage Month

November 16, 2008 - by: Diversity Insight 0 COMMENTS

The first American Indian Day was celebrated in May 1916 in New York. Red Fox James, a Blackfeet Indian, rode horseback from state to state getting endorsements from 24 state governments to have a day to honor American Indians. In 1990, President George H.W. Bush signed a joint congressional resolution designating November 1990 as “National American Indian Heritage Month.” Similar proclamations have been issued every year since 1994.

Here are some facts about American Indians and Alaska Natives from the U.S. Census Bureau. read more…

Categories: Just the Facts

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