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Accenture Says 'Inclusion Starts With I'

A new video on bias and inclusion received such a "visceral and overwhelming" response internally that Accenture is sharing it with the public.

ACCENTURE

Accenture (No. 14 on the DiversityInc Top 50 Companies for Diversity list) follows an open and transparent policy and communication in regard to diversity and inclusion, as both are fundamental to its culture and core values.


Ellyn Shook, Accenture's chief leadership and human resources officer, said the global company, which has a U.S. workforce that is more than 50 percent ethnically diverse, wants to ensure employees feel like they belong.

"We have really been trying to take a step in our journey around inclusion and diversity to really explore the sense of belonging our people feel," Shook told DiversityInc on Friday.

"We would like to be the most inclusive and diverse company on the planet. We have created an inclusive culture where we're seeing inclusive teams and we're seeing inclusive actions."

So, she said the next step was to ask, "Did our people really feel like they belong?"

In order to answer that question, Shook, who is responsible for helping 411,000 employees succeed both professionally and personally, said Accenture decided to create an internal video that profoundly explored the question of inclusiveness.

But, in the process of creating the video, "Inclusion Starts With I," it was discovered that "not all of our people are experiencing a sense of belonging," she said.

"Some of what we're seeing is coming from what might be surprising places in our organization."

In the video, a group of Accenture people demonstrates that bias can appear in both expected and unexpected ways. At the beginning, employees hold a poster board with a message detailing an experience with bias, but as the video progresses they provide messages on how each of us has the power to make a difference.

"What the video really intended to do was to give employees their own voice in sharing their feelings," Shook said.

From an Internal to External Audience

"Inclusion Starts With I" was shown for the first time a month ago to about 600 of the company's next generation leaders during an Accenture Leadership Development program.

"We showed it to them altogether, and the emotion was visceral and overwhelming in the room," Shook said.

"They then went back to their business groups and had discussions about diversity, inclusion and belonging."

Following the impactful responses from Accenture's up and coming managing directors, Shook said she actually shared the video with a group of fellow HR executives at a recent summit.

"The reaction from that group was overwhelming," she said.

"Many of them wanted to share it with their CEOs. They asked how we created it, and could I help them create one for their company.

"And it made me realize that what was created by our people, for our people, could actually really help drive change more broadly."

Accenture then made the decision to share the video publicly.

Accenture Senior Managing Director Nate Boaz.

"We actually believe that this is not just a moment, but really the beginning of a movement within Accenture, but also more broadly in the world," Shook said.

Accenture is teaming with Thrive Global to create workshops for its employees to explore thoughts and feelings regarding a sense of belonging.

"We showed the video yesterday to 700 managing directors," Shook said.

"And at the end of the video, we asked each of the managing directors to make a commitment to act. One of our strong beliefs here at Accenture is it's not just about what we say, but it's about what we do.

"They wrote their commitments and each started standing in solidarity with each other. People have started to post their photos on Facebook, Instagram and Twitter with our hashtag #InclusionStartsWithI."

Accenture Chief Executive for North America Julie Sweet is a steering committee member of CEO Action for Diversity & Inclusion, the largest CEO-driven business commitment to advance diversity and inclusion in the workplace. The video will be included in Accenture's best practices. DiversityInc CEO Luke Visconti has also signed on the initiative, which launched earlier this month.

Shook, who has a track record of being a strong advocate for inclusion and diversity, said the benefits of inclusion are critical at Accenture.

"Our people are everything because we must be innovative to bring differentiated solutions to our clients," she said.

"So having an inclusive culture where people really feel as though they belong allows us to be smarter and more innovative. And that's a business issue at Accenture. Overall, that is an enormous benefit.

"Other benefits we're seeing are the rise of diversity of people applying to Accenture. Even though Accenture is a really large company, people are starting to see Accenture as a place where they can fit in, and be themselves at the same time."

Shook hopes that other companies will share the "Inclusion Starts With I" video and that it will inspire "other organizations to do something like this for their people in order to start a new conversation, a different conversation about what inclusion and diversity is really all about."

"I think we are on to something extraordinarily special," she said.

Accenture Research Shows CFOs Play a Growing Role in Digital Transformations at Financial Services Companies

"Financial services CFOs are increasingly performing a difficult balancing act between managing risk and unlocking value."

REUTERS

Originally Published by Accenture.

Chief financial officers (CFOs) at banks and insurance companies are playing a growing role in digital transformation by leveraging new data and analytic technologies and by assuming greater influence in decisions about technology investments, according to new research from Accenture (NYSE: ACN).

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Accenture: Report Identifies Clear Opportunity to Accelerate the Advancement of Women

The Canada-U.S. Council for Advancement of Women's report shows companies need to close the gap between commitment and action.

REUTERS

Originally Published by Accenture.

The Canada-U.S. Council for Advancement of Women Entrepreneurs and Business Leaders (the Council) released its fifth and final pillar report, "Advancing Women as Leaders in the Private Sector." The report finds that despite a commitment to advancing women, many companies across Canada and the U.S. are lacking clear goals, the ability to measure progress or accountable leaders to drive progress. There is a real opportunity to accelerate the advancement of women by closing the gap between commitment and action. The good news is that significant research exists to guide companies in creating action plans that can accelerate the slow progress that has been made to date. The final pillar report was led by Tina Lee, Chief Executive Officer, T&T Supermarkets, and Julie Sweet, Chief Executive Officer – North America, Accenture.

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I'm White and I Might Bring Out My Guns: Racist Threatens Black Women in Video

Susan Westwood's rant against two Black sisters in front of their apartment building gets her fired.

FACEBOOK

Two Black sisters in North Carolina were harassed standing outside of their apartment building by a white woman who couldn't believe they could afford to live there, in her perceived "white space."

Leisa and Chele Garris, residents of Camden Fairview Apartments in SouthPark in Charlotte, were waiting for AAA to jump their car when Susan Westwood began hurling racist threats at them.

Videos of the Oct. 19 incident were shared by Chele Garris on Facebook and have gone viral.

"Do you live here?" Westwood says. "I'm white … and I make $125,000 a year and I want to make sure that you're all up in here."

She also told them she was "f**king fabulous," before she threatened to "bring out my concealed weapons."

"Is your boyfriend here? Is your baby daddy here? Nobody cares, I'm white and I'm hot," Westwood said. "You're hanging around in a place you don't belong."

Another White Person Harrasing African American People www.youtube.com

Elijah Anderson, a Yale sociology professor, writes about the concept of "white space" in his upcoming book, "Black in White Space":

"In the white space, white people … stigmatize anonymous Black persons by associating them with the putative danger, crime and poverty of the iconic ghetto, typically leaving Black people with much to prove before [trust]. The tolerated Black person in the white space is one who is 'in his place.'

"Such a person is less likely to disturb the implicit racial order—white people as dominant and Black people as subordinate."

So a Black person who isn't in her right place, for example, here in this recorded incident, warrants a threat.

In the video, Chele Garris calls 911 and tells dispatcher that the incident is happening in front of her home.

"My car's bad. I called AAA. This lady is bothering me in front of my door. Do you hear her?"

"It surprised me," she tells a police dispatcher. "I've been living here for over a year and I've never been treated this way. I'm a resident just like her."

Charlotte PD said they've issued Westwood, "four criminal summons, including two counts of communicating threats and two counts of simple assault."

A police incident report says the woman made threats of "bodily injury" and the victim told police "that she believed the threat could be carried out."

In North Carolina, communicating threats (aka terrorist threat, malicious harassment, when someone threatens to kill or physically harm someone else), is subject to being "f**king fabulous" in a jail cell, house arrest or electronic monitoring her hot self, probation or fines for her recently unemployed backside.

While Westwood bragged in the video that despite what Garris and her sister did, she said:"I will still make $125,000 Monday morning."

Not if social media has anything to say about it.

Sense of entitlement, meet reality.

She was fired on Sunday from Spectrum Enterprises, Charter Communications:

"The incident recorded in Charlotte is a blatant violation of Charter's code of conduct and clearly disregards the company's commitment to inclusion and respectful behavior," it said. "As such, Ms. Westwood's employment with the company has been terminated, effective immediately."

"It's so upsetting to know that today we have overt racism still going on in 2018," Garris said.

Serena Williams Tells Women to 'Be Seen, Be Heard'

The tennis pro talked to women about empowerment and equality.

TWITTER

Wearing a T-shirt with the statement "Be Seen, Be Heard," Serena Williams spoke at a conference Friday afternoon in Philadelphia, offering a message consistent with the tennis pro's battles in her professional life.

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Police Professionals Welcome New Technologies but Require Training and Enhanced Workforce Planning, Accenture Survey Finds

The specific technologies that respondents expect to see their organizations use more over the next three to five years include body-worn cameras (48 percent), biometrics (37 percent), video analytics (42 percent) and predictive policing technologies (26 percent).

REUTERS

Originally Published by Accenture.

Three-fourths (76 percent) of policing personnel expect that they will need new digital skills to be effective in their roles over the next three to five years, and half (50 percent) are willing to learn new digital skills if they receive the necessary training from their employer, according to findings of a six-country survey released by Accenture at the annual conference of the International Association of Chiefs of Police (IACP).

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Millennials Likely to Be the Biggest Spenders This Holiday Season, Accenture Survey Reveals

Use of social media platforms for holiday shopping is rising quickly.

REUTERS

Originally Published by Accenture.

U.S. consumers expect to spend more money on holiday shopping this year than last year, with millennials likely to be the biggest spenders according to results of the 12th Annual Holiday Shopping Survey from Accenture.

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Accenture Introduces Ella and Ethan, AI Bots to Improve a Patient's Health and Care Using the Accenture Intelligent Patient Platform

The bots are designed to deliver a more personalized patient experience and better patient support.

REUTERS

Originally Published by Accenture.

Accenture has enhanced the Accenture Intelligent Patient Platform with the addition of Ella and Ethan, two interactive virtual-assistant bots that use artificial intelligence (AI) to constantly learn and make intelligent recommendations for interactions between life sciences companies, patients, health care providers (HCPs) and caregivers. Designed to help improve a patient's health and overall experience, the bots are part of Accenture's Salesforce Fullforce Solutions powered by Salesforce Health Cloud and Einstein AI, as well as Amazon's Alexa.

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Kavanaugh vs. Ford

A tale of a complete lack of diversity causing bad decisions, and shifting opinions nationwide, as well as a teachable moment for corporate America.

Having zero diversity, and by trying to make it "Kavanaugh vs. Ford," the old, white Republican men lost control of the nomination, and made it about them versus all women, a situation that, at best, will be a Pyrrhic victory.

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