5 Questions with Rosalyn Taylor O’Neale
Friday, January 6, 2012
Chief Diversity and Inclusion Officer
Campbell Soup Company
"A lot of work is needed to ensure women continue to advance
in our industry."
Rosalyn Taylor O’Neale leads Campbell Soup Company’s global
diversity and inclusion efforts, partnering with leaders of global businesses, functions
and supply chain to evolve the diversity and inclusion strategy around
attraction, retention, training, development and engagement. She has more than 25
years of global diversity experience from the vantage points of corporate
leader, consultant and author. She was named one of the "Most Influential
Blacks in Corporate America” by Savoy magazine, one of the "Top Executives In
Diversity” by Black Enterprise magazine and one of the "100 Top Executives in
America” by Uptown Professional magazine. She started her career in human resources
with Digital Equipment Corp., now part of Hewlett Packard. She was the CEO of
Barnes, O’Neale & Associates and, in 2002, served as vice president-diversity
initiatives for MTV Networks. She is the author of 7 Keys 2 Success: Unlocking the Passion for Diversity.
Campbell Soup Company is recognized as a
leader in the area of employee resource groups, which the company calls business
resource affinity networks. What BRANs does The Campbell Soup Co. offer and
what is the driving force behind establishing them?
CPG/retail companies have funded and sponsored networks to help with employee
retention and onboarding and, more recently, to provide valuable consumer
insights. For members of the networks there are opportunities to develop and
practice leadership skills, develop extended networks and become more
culturally competent. Our networks originally grew out of Women and African
American employees' desire to share experiences and to develop a network of
like colleagues. As our diversity and inclusion initiative developed,
additional groups petitioned for and were granted official network status. Today
there are eight resource groups: Women of Campbell; Campbell's African American
Network; Hispanic Network de Campbell; Asian Network of Campbell; BRIDGE, a generational
network; GAAIN -- Global American Indian and Aboriginal; OPEN
a lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender
network; and CAPS, Campbell's administrative assistant professional network.
How have the company’s BRANs evolved and
what role do they play now?
or connecting around shared values is important in all cultures. It is not an
exclusionary activity, but rather a place of support for members of the
affinity and education for others. Our BRANs evolved from small gatherings of
employees with a characteristic or affinity to employee resource groups with a
focus on supporting similar and educating different employees. A lot of work is
needed to ensure women continue to advance in our industry. Today our BRANs have two major foci: to
connect Campbell's to consumers and to develop and engage members and help them
to execute their jobs with excellence.
How have the company’s BRANs helped boost
sales or profits?
Hispanic Network has provided consumer insights with rich data gathered at a
regional Hispanic Heritage Festival. To help Campbell’s understand and connect
to the Millennial consumer, BRIDGE joined with members of product innovation
teams to sponsor a day of dialogue with
Chuck Underwood, a generational expert. The Women of Campbell network
was instrumental in the development of extremely successful product lines like
Select Harvest soups.
Campbell Soup Company received the 2010
Catalyst Award for our success in advancing women to leadership roles. How
would you characterize the cpg/retail industry’s efforts to advance women?
have been involved with cpg/retail organizations for many years. The need to
identify, build affinity with and understand the consumer -- especially women, who
make the majority of all purchase decisions -- has made this industry
attractive to and in need of women in leadership and decision-makings
positions. However, there is still a lot of work needed to ensure that women
continue to advance in our industry.
What initiatives have led to greater
advancement of women at Campbell Soup Company and why are those programs important to your business?
Much of the work that
continues to provide opportunities for women to perform and advance is not
solely focused on women. It is the result of successfully implementing talent
management processes. This allows us to identify talent and provide needed
support, development and sponsorship. Women of Campbell and our talent management
team led an extremely successful Women's Leadership Development program. This
educational experience helps ensure the organization will always have women who
are ready to assume leadership positions. As the talent pipeline continues to
fill with smart and experienced women, it is crucial to our success that we can
attract, engage and fully utilize women in all of our global operations.