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Article

Returning to Work: Supporting Caregivers While Centering Equity in the Workplace

June 15, 2022

From the True MOSAIC “Giving Care to the Caregivers” thought leadership series

With more than two years of data to support a path forward as leaders make plans for a return to office, many workers with caregiving responsibilities are finding a safe space in hybrid models. However, while hybrid models allow for potential worker flexibility, it also has the potential of creating inequitable workplaces as those who work in-person may have more contact with managers and executives, while those who stay home fall out of sight and out of mind. 

Caregivers have a unique set of needs that should be considered when companies return to the workplace in any form. In True MOSAIC’s latest study, “Giving Care to the Caregivers”, we found:

  • Caregivers are concerned about proximity bias and those concerns should be addressed by workplace managers. 
  • Specifically, 7 in 10 caregivers are concerned about colleagues who choose to work in person getting more credit for their work (71%) and being perceived more favorably (73%).
  • When it comes to the benefits of a hybrid or remote setting, parents were most likely to report more time with family as a benefit of working remotely. 

Although they take the lead on increased work hours (64%), 90% of caregivers who work remotely or in hybrid arrangements agree that freedom from commuting has allowed for more personal time. This personal time can be used to take care of home responsibilities, including looking after others.

The Gift (and Responsibility) of Flexibility

Companies’ return-to-work plans will have a direct impact on people’s day-to-day lives. At a time when organizations are struggling to find and retain talent, they risk losing some of their most valuable contributors – caregivers. 

In the study, we found that mandates to come back to the office full time may lead to tension among employers and employees. If presented with an ultimatum, many employees surveyed would either comply or speak to their supervisor about flexible work arrangements. Nearly a quarter (24%) of employees would look for a new job. The data is striking and is consistent with labor trends that have seen many employees leaving their jobs in recent times. 

Additionally, the cost to replace employees who resign from the company can be expensive. In fact, the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics estimates it costs $160,000 to replace a position that earns $80,000 per year. At a time when more employees expect flexibility, it simply makes sense to find ways to address the needs of employees. 

For caregivers, especially, flexibility is key. But what does flexibility look like in practice? For some, it means they have the option to choose hours that meets the demands of caretaking, meetings, and other home and work responsibilities. For others, it means the option to work four-day weeks or part time. However, an individual chooses to define it, the definition of flexibility is determined by the employee — not the employer. The data shows that caregivers are split on how they would like to work: 39% prefer in-person work settings while 40% prefer hybrid working arrangements.

Like anything, there’s a responsibility that comes with flexibility. Whether you are an employee or employer, trust is to be earned for flexibility in hybrid models to work. While leaders should look to extend flexibility to employees, employees need to perform their duties and meet expectations in order to earn the trust of their employer. This is also true for colleagues working together on the same team where interpersonal communication and teamwork will help to ensure that trust is instilled in the day-to-day work.

Our study shows that generally, hybrid work is the employee preference and that among respondents who prefer hybrid work, the ideal work schedule consists of two to three days in the workplace per week. Across demographic groups, employees would prefer to ease into returning to the workplace with flexibility as a guiding principle.

While the preferences lean slightly toward hybrid work, it’s important to remember that caregivers are not a monolith. Individual preferences should be considered as employers seek to hire and retain top talent. In the end, if employees feel their job fits their life choices, they will be able to bring their whole selves to work and fully engage in the job long term.

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The research for the True MOSAIC “Giving Care to the Caregivers” thought leadership series was conducted by FleishmanHillard’s TRUE Global Intelligence, the agency’s in-house research practice. Research for the report is based on a total of 2,076 respondents including a U.S. nationally representative sample (based on gender, age, region) of n=1,056, and an oversample of respondents who self-identified as Disabled (n=278), AAPI (n=250), Hispanic (n=260), Black (n=280), Caregivers (n=272), and Parents (n=274). The survey was conducted between March 15-29, 2022.

This blog post is part of a series focused on caregivers and our new ways of working, exploring what leaders should consider in their return to office plans. The next blog in the series will address how hybrid work models bring work-life balance to caregivers.


Article

Antoinette Willcocks joins FleishmanHillard UK as first Head of Diversity, Equity and Inclusion

FleishmanHillard UK has appointed Antoinette Willcocks as its first head of diversity, equity and inclusion (DE&I) tasked with delivering on our vision to be the most diverse and inclusive agency in the country. The new role will see Antoinette work alongside Christina Peach, True MOSAIC EMEA lead and take a place on the UK Management […]

The post Antoinette Willcocks joins FleishmanHillard UK as first Head of Diversity, Equity and Inclusion appeared first on United Kingdom.

Article

FleishmanHillard wins Best Equality and Inclusion Cause Campaign at the Purpose Awards

June 10, 2022

We’re delighted to have won two awards at this year’s EMEA Purpose Awards at BAFTA, London. Our work with the International Paralympic Committee and adam&eveDDB to launch WeThe15 was awarded Best Equality & Inclusion Cause Campaign in the Charity/NGO and the Collaboration categories. The Purpose Awards recognise creative campaigns that further positive causes. They acknowledge […]

The post FleishmanHillard wins Best Equality and Inclusion Cause Campaign at the Purpose Awards appeared first on United Kingdom.

Article

Applications open for FleishmanHillard UK’s 2022 Emerging Talent Scheme

FleishmanHillard UK’s Emerging Talent scheme is open to applications for a number of roles throughout the agency including: Design project management Tech PR Brand & consumer PR Public affairs Corporate communications Healthcare PR The Emerging Talent Scheme is open to all abilities including school leavers, graduates or people considering a change of career. Check out the […]

The post Applications open for FleishmanHillard UK’s 2022 Emerging Talent Scheme appeared first on United Kingdom.

Article

FleishmanHillard wins Best Arts, Culture, Sport/Entertainment Campaign at the CIPR Excellence Awards

June 9, 2022

Thrilled to be awarded Best Arts, Culture, Sport or Entertainment Campaign at the CIPR Excellence Awards for our work with the International Paralympic Committee (IPC) alongside adam&eveDDB for the #WeThe15 campaign. The CIPR Excellence Awards are undoubtedly one of the most prestigious awards in the PR industry reflecting best practice in public relations and communications […]

The post FleishmanHillard wins Best Arts, Culture, Sport/Entertainment Campaign at the CIPR Excellence Awards appeared first on United Kingdom.

Article

Keeping A King’s Legacy Strong in 2022

April 27, 2022
By Chavonne Jones

If we are lucky enough in this life, we may enjoy a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity to work with one of our heroes – whether a person or an institution – who has made a lasting impact on the world and whose legacy transcends time and carries on with each generation.

That shining opportunity happened to me when FH4Inclusion, FleishmanHillard’s global pro bono initiative, and True MOSAIC, our DE&I practice, were invited to collaborate with The King Center for Nonviolent Social Change (also known as The King Center) based in Atlanta. During the past few years, we had the esteemed honor of working with The King Center’s CEO Dr. Bernice A. King and The King Center’s PR and communications team.

Our first assignment with The King Center was the BE LOVE campaign. In collaboration with BBDO and Hearts & Science, we helped rally support around creating the Beloved Community – a way of living and a place where we can all work and play in peace and harmony and be treated as equals. We also worked to position Dr. King as a thought leader on voting rights, following the passing of Georgia’s restrictive voting legislation last year.

Since then, starting this January, we worked with The King Center to launch its new digital offering Nonviolence365® (NV365), a learning opportunity that trains people how to use Dr. Martin Luther King Jr.’s philosophy and principles of nonviolence to fight for social change. NV365 was announced a week before MLK Day, which brought on a unique set of challenges for FleishmanHillard and Dr. King’s communications team who was already preparing for one of the most important days of the year for The King Center. We were also asked to promote Dr. King’s new children’s book “It Starts with Me.”

As a result of our efforts, Dr. King was featured on several talk shows and other outlets, including The Daily Show with Trevor Noah, The Real, BBC News and others.

In honor of Black History Month, our True MOSAIC global practice co-lead, Adiya Mobley, facilitated an insightful internal discussion with Chance Patterson and Mina Bryant from The King Center. The conversation introduced the broader FleishmanHillard community to The King Center and discussed the importance of creating a Beloved Community in the corporate environment, among other topics.

The King Center participated in FleishmanHillard’s TRUE Self x True MOSAIC process, a collaborative effort that helps to define an organization’s foundational narrative, positioning and messaging in context to key stakeholders. The team helped define and articulate the work and mission of The King Center over the course of several workshop sessions.

“The work we’ve done alongside The Martin Luther King Center for Nonviolent Social Justice has been some of the most rewarding for many of us at FleishmanHillard,” said Jerry Tolk, senior partner & general manager of the FleishmanHillard in Atlanta office. “We were able to raise the profile of The King Center and Dr. King both nationally and internationally and garner visibility for NV365– an online social justice program that is central to the institution’s mission and the legacy it’s constantly growing and evolving.”

We encourage you to sign up for NV365 at thekingcenterinstitute.org to explore MLK’s philosophy of nonviolence and to become a part of creating the Beloved Community we all aspire to live in.

Article

FleishmanHillard are PRmoment Awards Finalists for WeThe15

March 11, 2022

FleishmanHillard is thrilled to be a finalist in the PRmoment Awards 2022 for our work with the International Paralympic Committee (IPC) and adam&eveDDB to launch WeThe15, the largest human rights campaign to advance the lives of 1.2bn people with disabilities. The movement, WeThe15, takes its name from the 15% of the global population who have […]

The post FleishmanHillard are PRmoment Awards Finalists for WeThe15 appeared first on United Kingdom.

Article

Celebrating the African Diaspora

March 2, 2022
By Cheyenne Cameron-Pruitt

The African Diaspora includes countries and communities around the world with descendants from native Africa. For most, the movement and disbursement was involuntary as they were stolen from their land as enslaved people. Many countries and communities have been deeply influenced, and often built upon African culture and traditions, due to this involuntary movement. We celebrate the diaspora and FleishmanHillard employees sharing their perspectives as members of it.

Celebrating Afrolatinidad

By Gaetane Gomes

This YouTube video speaks volumes to me. I can relate to this as I am a first-generation American, of multi-cultural heritage. I was born in New York and my family is from the Dominican Republic. I didn’t understand until I was much older why I was frequently asked to “explain” my background…and why if I grew up in the United States, how did I come to learn Spanish? Documentaries such as these (and I encourage you to watch) have helped me share with others the robust culture I am proud to be a descendant of. If something shorter is more your vibe, 1:03 – 2:05 will say it all for me.

Adolescence is not easy for most of us, yet today in 2022 we have so much opportunity to learn from and grow with each other. Someone’s name, complexion, accent nor first language tells the full and complete story of how dynamic and unique we each individually are.

I’ve been fortunate to have been able to spend significant time in Colombia, the Dominican Republic and Brazil. I love to dance and am always in the mood for some Cuban salsa. And if you could use a dance break, I’ll leave you with this song – Los 4 con Alexander Abreu – “Yo Represento.”

Here are some of the song’s lyrics translated to English:

Wherever you are

Let our voices reach you

Our messages, our hands be proud of who you are

Isle of Spice

By Cheyenne Cameron-Pruitt

Grenada, 21 miles long, 12 miles wide, nestled in the West Indies, the southernmost of the Lesser Antilles, often confused for a city in Spain, known for its spices, beautiful landscapes and unique underwater sculptures. I know it as my home away from home, a place that has instilled in me so much of who I am, even halfway around the world. There is a richness to the culture, where a strong sense of pride and a love from the people can be felt like none other I’ve known.

I found my love for storytelling through listening to the oral history shared by my great-grandma, who is now 105 – stories of pride for a nation, fear of fallout from political discourse, accounts of the strength shown by Grenadians throughout the country’s development and our ancestors’ resistance and revolution in the face of colonization and enslavement.

I found the courage to question the things that weren’t right as I learned about how my grandparents fought for Grenadian independence through protest and civil disobedience, and allowed their children to march with them 48 years ago. My grandpa was the first to teach me that sometimes what we read in the history books isn’t true, and that revisionist history not only exists but can be extremely dangerous.

I am blessed to have a place where I can feel my roots, and to feel at home outside of what I know. I’ve felt the energy, love and pride for my little island, but know that isn’t the experience of all. As I’ve explored what it means to be a Black American while also identifying as Grenadian, I’ve realized that having this cultural influence is not something to take lightly. The bittersweetness of being a part of the diaspora is that while many of us have the great privilege of honoring the culture, heritage and ancestors that we know, we must remember to not take it for granted as the same privilege was stolen from millions of others and their generations to come.

Bon Jay Peni Mueh!

Article

Celebrating Intersectionality Within the Black Identity

February 18, 2022

Classification of race and ethnicity is usually generalized to the following categories: Black, Asian, Hispanic, American Indians and White. When you’re biracial, these checklist groups are just a tiny fraction of the daily struggles you’ll encounter. Biracial individuals often feel part of both of their cultures and so are always asking themselves, “Am I enough?” In this piece, Popoai Tanuvasa-Lole, Alfred Fleishman Diversity Fellow, shares her perspective on being biracial in America.

Myth of the Monolith

Honestly, I didn’t think much about race growing up. I was one of two Black kids in my entire school, everyone else was white. Don’t get me wrong, it was very clear to me that I was different. But I didn’t really have an opinion on what I was and what I wasn’t. I was okay with operating in that default “other” category.

Right now, and this may change, I identify as a mixed-race Black person. When I went to college, it really changed how I was able to identify with being Black. Although Maryville University is a predominantly white institution (PWI), I’d never been in a place where there were so many Black people that looked so many different ways and sat in so many different intersections of the Black identity and life. For the first time, I felt truly loved and accepted. However, this new setting posed its own set of challenges.

I had a lot of folks who couldn’t tell “what I was” at first glance, and I had to deal with ethnic ambiguity that I’d never had to deal with before. And this put me in the situation of having to find out what language I wanted to use to define myself. Sometimes I felt like a conditional Black person, and I think there are some mixed-race Black folks who have a lot of anger about that. I still struggle with it today. I’ve experienced many people both implying and saying, “Well, you’re not Black and you’re not Samoan enough.” And, while I feel very connected to both cultures, I sometimes feel as if I don’t belong to either.

But I’ve also come to understand that the idea of being “authentically” Black is literally a response to things like the one-drop rule and the tie between white supremacy and how we define race and mixed race. So, this reclamation of what it means to be Black is a byproduct of racism. But (and there’s a big but), I’d be remiss to not acknowledge that there are privileges that I have that other non-mixed Black people don’t. I am lighter skinned. I might not be white-passing, but I can pass as something else and because of this, I have been treated as an “exception to the rule” multiple times.

It’s weird to be labeled this way, and I’ve been on the “identity struggle bus” for the better part of my life. But I wouldn’t have it any other way; it’s what makes me who I am. And I’m not an exception. I think that has really made me embrace this idea of I am Black. I’m mixed, but I’m Black.

And being Black is nuanced. It’s beautiful. It’s a privilege in its own right.

Article

Accessibility at Work: Cultivating a Culture of Disability Inclusion

February 14, 2022

Over the past decade, many industries have begun creating products and services from an “accessibility-first” perspective: one that considers the needs of as many people as possible from the start. This approach prioritizes equitable experiences for users, including the estimated 1.2 billion persons with disabilities across the world. As communications practitioners, it is vital to ensure that materials are designed with a diverse audience in mind.

However, to cultivate a true culture of accessibility, we must not merely consider the impact of products and services on users. We must push beyond what we create to look at who we are as creators to open meaningful dialogues concerning our own workplace environments. When communications departments fail to maintain a culture that respects and values people with disabilities, this fails us all.

Here are three ways we can all support a culture of disability inclusion in the workplace:

Ramp up disability inclusion education

The path to creating an accessible environment for individuals with disabilities begins with developing a workplace culture that is founded in and actively practices inclusive values. Through top-down promotion of accessibility education, all employees can gain deeper insight into the experiences and needs of others.

Training and education practices need not be limited to official seminars or mandated online programs. Initiatives such as creating inclusive language and design guides and inviting speakers on disability and accessibility topics can enrich both the work we create and those who create it. Other activities like holding brainstorm sessions, with the intent to identify strategies to counteract disability biases, also support active learning.

Additionally, partnerships and collaborations offer valuable opportunities to support accessibility education and development. FleishmanHillard’s membership within The Valuable 500 – a network of companies committed to supporting disability inclusion – strengthens our capacity to develop and act upon accessible strategies within business.

Overall, educational programs and strategies must emphasize appropriate workplace behavior, how to uphold core accessible values in business and the process for reporting behavior that violates these values.

Promote accessible hiring practices

Creating an inclusive recruitment program requires consistent actions to combat hiring biases and proactively include those with disabilities. While inclusive hiring is founded in the domain of human resources professionals, it is ultimately a collaborative effort.

First, accessible job descriptions are a must. The language used within these descriptions reflect the values of the hiring organization and informs the applicant’s perception of the workplace culture. Where possible, communications professionals must advocate for up-to-date disability inclusion statements and accessible language in the role description. These should be regularly reviewed and revised as language conventions evolve.

Additionally, practices such as posting positions on job boards or attending career fairs that specifically support people with disabilities facilitates equitable recruitment. Furthermore, ensuring hiring teams are comprised of people with diverse identities and perspectives introduces a higher level of objectivity into this process. Communications professionals should use their position within a hiring team to actively support accessible practices, to the extent possible given their role within an organization.

As an example of such efforts, FleishmanHillard has partnered with the International Paralympic Committee and other Omnicom agencies to launch #WeThe15 – a decade long campaign that aims to further access to core human rights such as employment, education and healthcare for the 15% of the world with disabilities. An active commitment to disability inclusion during hiring is a critical part of breaking down barriers that people with disabilities face.

Establish and support employee resource groups

Everyone deserves a space where they feel heard and respected for their most authentic selves. Employee Resource Groups (ERGs) are voluntary groups, created with the purpose of supporting an inclusive environment, comprised of and led by employees who share a common identity or who are allies.

People with disabilities can form connections with individuals across entire organizations that may not otherwise be organically developed. These connections foster a sense of belonging within the workplace and bolsters employees’ ability to create diverse, groundbreaking work through collaborations.

At FleishmanHillard, our DisAbility Community ERG creates a space for people with disabilities and allies to find support and engage in open communication. Through enabling productive discussion about inclusive practices and the lived experiences of people with disabilities, this group has a unique and active impact on our communications work.

Conclusion

Each of these steps bring us closer to creating a culture of accessibility. However, at FleishmanHillard, we recognize the need to continuously improve and adapt our strategies on the path to inclusion. Through regular review and dialogues concerning these practices, communications professionals can foster disability inclusion around the world.