Advancing women to leadership roles "is not a diversity initiative, it’s a business imperative,” NEW Board Member Sue Sears, vice president of global diversity and inclusion at Kimberly-Clark, told nearly 150 NEW members and supporters at the NEW North Central Texas learning event, April 30, in Dallas.
Sears joined Tina Busch, human resources director for Kimberly-Clark’s Global CFO Organization, and Martha Feeback, membership manager at Catalyst, to share insights on Kimberly-Clark's women's leadership initiatives. Neena Newberry, president of Newberry Executive Solutions, moderated the discussion.
In 2010, Kimberly-Clark launched a company-wide initiative to include more women in leadership and introduce greater diversity. Last year, Kimberly-Clark’s CEO Thomas Faulk accepted the Catalyst Award for Strengthening the Business with Women Leaders.
Busch emphasized the importance of investing in talent, "paying for performance," and addressing the challenges women face when seeking workplace sponsors. Reverse mentorship -- pairing mature managers with Millennials to keep current with today's evolving career skills – is a winning strategy, the industry leaders agreed.
Attendees left inspired to steer their careers. "I am excited about what I learned and the connections I made," said Kristen Cady of The Kroger Co. "I am looking forward to the next event!"
"The panelists were engaging and provided great insight into what it takes to truly drive organization-wide culture change," said Cristina Rivera Hall of PepsiCo Inc. "I was engaged every second and learned quite a bit!”
Companies sending large groups to the event include Crossmark, Kimberly-Clark Corporation, The Kroger Co. and PepsiCo Inc.