Crawford & Company’s Global COO Speaks on Diversity & Inclusion
Events of past few years
Events of the past few years---including the recent police shootings, homophobia and concerns about illegal immigration—are negatively influencing workforces across the country, according to Howard Ross, founder and chief learning officer of Cook Ross Inc.
Speaking on “Managing in a Time of Fear” during last fall’s Business Insurance Diversity & Inclusion Institute conference, Mr. Ross explained how managers can help ease their employees’ fears by demonstrating their concern for what is happening in the world around them.
Later during the conference, Eric Alva, the first American soldier wounded during Operation Iraqi Freedom, spoke about his battle to overcome his injuries and the difficulties he encountered after leaving the military and coming out as gay. From learning to walk with a prosthetic, to his desire to continue his education and obtain his degree, Mr. Alva inspired his audience to persevere by demonstrating how he conquered such obstacles.
A panel of insurance industry executives candidly shared how “covering at work” can inhibit employee performance, and that employees should be encouraged to “bring their whole selves to work” to enhance organizational effectiveness.
During a closed-door roundtable held on the morning of the second day of the conference, eight insurance industry CEOs gathered to develop a “commitment statement” that was later revealed during a session addressing the business imperative for embracing diversity and inclusion.
The conference, held Sept. 28-29 in Chicago, also featured innovative diversity training by Second City Works, the B2B side of The Second City, the world’s leading comedy theater and school of improvisation. Another session used gamification to connect the concept of diversity with inclusion, as attendees played Contineo, an interactive game that uses conversations, challenges and other engaging activities, to teach the fundamentals of D&I.
Other conference sessions addressed:
- D+I considerations in client engagement
- Insurance regulator focus on driving diversity in the industry
- Demonstrations of technology designed to facilitate diversity and inclusion.
- The latest D&I research conducted by the Institute and in conjunction with the Families & Work Institute
- Executive Insights – short, inspirational speeches by industry leaders from Ryan Specialty Group, The Hartford, Willis Towers Watson and Zurich
The Absolute Inclusion Leadership Conference was the inaugural event of Business Insurance’s Diversity & Inclusion Institute, which was launched in December 2015 to promote and advance diversity and inclusion throughout the commercial insurance industry. The 2017 Institute conference, which will address ways that D&I can improve corporate image and profitability, is in the planning stages.
Business Insurance Diversity & Inclusion Institute
The insurance industry historically has lacked diversity in its workforce, with the majority of workers being men of Western European descent. Recognizing the value of building a diverse and inclusive workplace, the industry is committed to bringing about change. This special report, “Absolute Inclusion,” examines the industry’s journey toward diversity.
Catalyst Offers Free D&I Training Courses
The Catalyst organization offers free, online training courses to help business leaders become more effective in building and sustaining diverse and inclusive workplaces. These courses can be taken live, or they can be self-paced and repeated an unlimited number of times.
An inclusive manager strives to make all employees feel a part of their team. Take this inclusive leader quiz to measure where you stand.
Bill Bishop with Robert G. Cushing
In the book, “The Big Sort,” journalist Robert G. Cushing and retired sociologist Bill Bishop use research and demographics to show how Americans over the past three decades have clustered themselves into homogeneous communities. The authors examine how this “way-of-life segregation” has created divisiveness and polarization for Americans culturally, politically and ideologically.
Marsh & McLennan Companies
In response to the controversial Religious Freedom Act, Marsh & McLennan Companies’ released a statement this past May to express support for the LGBT community and promote equality for all in the workplace and larger society. Marsh’s statement can be viewed by clicking on the link below.
The Hartford Financial Services Group, has been named by DiversityInc. Magazine as one of the 2016 top nine companies for hiring people with disabilities. Hartford Financial Services is a member of the Business Insurance Diversity & Inclusion Institute. Click on the link below to learn more about the other companies that made the list and the qualifications.
Research shows that in the finance and insurance industries, very few women reach the highest- paid and most powerful positions. This chart from Catalyst provides the data.
A Supreme Court ruling in 2015 made it legal for people who are LGBT to marry in any state within the country. But today, in 28 states, a person can be fired from their job for being gay or transgender. Rich Bellis, associate editor for FastCompany.com, reports on existing employment laws around the country and how they impact the LGBT community.
Rowland & Associates
The “Cultural Competence” test measures how “fluent” you are in understanding other cultures. Click on this link to test your fluency.
UPstanding lists 100 Executives in the United States and United Kingdom who are advocates for diverse and inclusive workplaces and who have fought racial discrimination as they have climbed the career ladder.
LinkedIn Official Blog
This spring, LinkedIn released its first Veterans Insight report, which analyzed the skills, experiences and career paths of veteran professionals in today’s work force. The unemployment rate for this group has fallen significantly since 9/11, and veterans are now seen as “in-demand” employees. This report takes a look at what makes veterans successful.
Diversity in the Workplace
“The Big Five Model” explains how personalities differ. In some cases, employers use it to identify which personalities work best together. Learn more about this model by clicking on the link.
Mental Health America
Each year, more than 21% of adult Americans between the ages of 18 and 64 experience some type of diagnosable anxiety disorder. Anxiety disorders affect the body, one’s thoughts and behaviors. Learn more about this common form of mental illness by clicking on this infographic from Mental Health America.
The Diversity Toolkit
This toolkit provides 21 tips on how to incorporate diversity awareness into your daily routine.
Human Rights Campaign
The annual Corporate Equality Index, sponsored by the Human Rights Campaign, rates businesses on the policies and practices they have established to create an inclusive work environment for the LGBT community. The 2016 report lists 407 companies that earned the title “Best Places to Work for LGBT Equality.”
The Teaching Transgender Toolkit
As more people come out as transgender, it is important for employees to understand the rights of these employees and how to create an inclusive work culture for them. This toolkit helps people learn about the identities and experiences of people who are transgender.
National Institutes of Health
Accommodating the religious needs of employers can potentially conflict with the needs of employers. This toolkit explains how employers can resolve potential conflicts.
Employee Benefit Adviser
On average in the United States, for every dollar a man makes, a women is estimated to earn 79 cents. This slideshow lists the industries where the pay gap is the widest.
U.S. Department of Labor
Resources related to affirmative action and equal employment opportunities are listed on this web page from the Office of Federal Contract Compliance Programs.
A survey taken during women’s history month, March, looks at the advancement and pay of women in the workforce.
Learn 39 ways companies benefit from a diverse and inclusive workforce.
Why Diversity Matters: New research makes it increasingly clear that companies with more diverse workforces perform better financially
McKinsey & Company
Research shows that companies committed to diverse and inclusive work environments benefit from high financial
Project Implicit resource group
Unearth your conscious and unconscious attitudes and beliefs regarding a variety of topics by taking these 10 – 15 minute tests created by Project Implicit.
25 companies have been named as the top U.S. companies for multicultural women in 2016.