NEW investing in inclusion to drive change
Friday, July 31, 2015
Posted by: Barbara Francella
NEW Inclusion Chair Ken Charles of General Mills delivered
"Creating a Collective Voice"
at the NEW Executive Leaders Forum on
July 30, 2015.
Network of Executive Women Inclusion Chair Ken Charles urged industry leaders to help build an inclusive society by changing themselves, their organizations and their communities during an address at the NEW Executive Leaders Forum, July
30 outside Los Angeles.
Charles, vice president for global
inclusion and staffing at General Mills, said, "We are all a product of our experiences and we don’t know
it all. The only way to get better is to educate ourselves —
expose ourselves, ask questions, get outside our community.”
Charles urged NEW Forum attendees to support and model the
Network's diversity and inclusion efforts. "Industry leaders have an
opportunity to consider how we show up in our workplaces and how we can benefit
everyone," he said.
While Charles aspires to be inclusive of other people, his
children already accept others as they are. "Inclusion is how they act and
move through the world," he said. "Think of our own families and
children, the kid next door, nieces and nephews — What are we doing to help
them understand this is an inclusive world? What tools are we giving them to
At work, invest in your team and create a safe space where
everyone can do their best, he urged industry leaders. "A great manager
has to be a great manager to all," he said. "When you invest, value
and give people stretch assignments, they will do tremendous things."
Invest in your community, too, Charles advised. "Think
about your portfolio [of giving]. If you think about the change you personally
want to make in your community, where are you placing your bets? Let the change
begin within each and every one of us."
Charles also shared the Network’s efforts to create a more
diverse and inclusive NEW with the 10-20-30 plan. The initiative calls for
NEW membership to be at least 10 percent male, 20 percent early career professionals
and 30 percent multicultural.