Gina Sotir, Accenture Romania: Our ecosystem is diverse – performance, innovation and agility are achieved through the inclusion of all people

In today’s post, Accenture’s Inclusion & Diversity Lead for Romania, Gina Sotir, talks about what actions the company has been taking in diversity management.

Why and since when does your company believe and invest in diversity management?

At Accenture, Inclusion & Diversity are fundamental to our culture and embedded in our core values.

We believe that our diversity makes us stronger and more innovative.

Since our organization’s founding, Inclusion & Diversity has been passionately weaved into our core values and since then our focus adapts and evolves. In 1995 we had already launched our first formal global I&D strategy and by 1999 we had well-articulated programs for women and ethnicity diversity.

What aspects of diversity management have the highest priority in your company?

We take a wide view of inclusion & diversity covering all areas with same priority: Woman, Ethnic Diversity, LGBT Community, Persons with Disabilities and Cross-Cultural Diversity. It’s important that all employees feel empowered to bring their true authenticity to work, every day.

Which D&I activities have been implemented in your organization so far?

Regarding our focus on gender balance, we surpassed 40% women new hires, more than 160,000 women at Accenture. 36% of our external board of directors are women, we have put in place flexible working options, child care facilities, parenting workshops, and leadership development programs. Also, we focus on diversity in recruiting by establishing relationships with diversity – rich institutions and organizations.

When it comes to ethnicity, we have developed diversity awareness training, networking and celebration events, engagement and retention interviews to better understand opportunities for improvement.

When it comes to the LGBT, we have 22,000+ allies globally, meaning employees who support this community.

Person with disabilities are also extremely important. We have developed awareness and mentoring programs, we support employees with different disabilities. Also, we have accessibility audits to ensure our infrastructure is accessible.

In terms of cross-cultural diversity, we have a network of cross -cultural diversity sponsors, learning coaches certified to conduct trainings, to name some of the programs.

Many companies aren't prioritizing inclusion and diversity initiatives right now. Why should they reconsider?

Our ecosystem is diverse – performance, innovation and agility are achieved through the inclusion of all people. When people can be their authentic selves at work, they exhibit higher levels of commitment, performance and engagement.

In your opinion, what tangible benefits does diversity bring to your company?

Diversity creates an environment where people can be successful, both professionally and personally – a workplace where people can feel comfortable, be themselves and, as a result, be inspired.

Can you name three diversity challenges that companies have to pay attention to?

Governmental laws, regulations and business practices should uphold the principles of diversity, inclusion and equality.

What do you do to convince your colleagues to see the value in diversity management, or even more to truly get them on board?

In Accenture, we build inclusion by counting on deep, visible leadership commitment to an environment where diversity thrives. Our people bring their full selves to work, exhibiting all the qualities, characteristics and perspectives that make each of us unique contributors to our company's success.