by Shanis Windland, Vice President Diversity & Inclusion, VMware
March 26, 2020
As “social distancing” and “sheltering in place” become our new normal, it’s so important that we connect and share our fears, struggles and hopefully small wins.
For example, I find it difficult lately to jump into a video call without first acknowledging the issues we’re all dealing with, such as:
Even as I write this article, I’m thinking about new ways to better connect with my colleagues across the globe, from watercooler calls to virtual coffee breaks. Communicating and making sure everyone has a voice and a support network is vital.
We are all evolving as we enter unchartered waters together. That’s why building a diverse company with an inclusive culture and community is even more critical.
I’ve said in the past that diversity and inclusion (D&I) is a journey, and one that is a business priority at VMware. To help us on this journey, we released our 2019 D&I report.
We have a lot to celebrate at VMware. Our community and culture is strong. However, we know there is more work to do, so we are continuing to take an agile approach to D&I. We view transparency as one of the keys to improving our culture, so you’ll see our metrics in the report that help us identify our areas of focus for 2020.
But first, I want to highlight three new D&I programs we recently rolled out at VMware.
1. Inclusive Leadership Initiative
We recently launched our Inclusive Leadership initiative, piloting inclusion training and giving leaders tools and resources on how to build a sense of belonging and community within their teams. We know that reinforcing inclusive leadership as a critical skill is important to our long- term success.
2. Getting Real Series
We’re also tackling a variety of topics, like race and privilege through our “Getting Real” series, with the goal to break down barriers and normalize topics that were once taboo in the workplace. All this with the goal to build an even more inclusive community.
3. Accessibility Week
We’re also leaning into accessibility. We recently launched our first Accessibility Week, which included a hackathon. VMware engineers developed prototypes to improve the accessibility of our internal products, systems and tools to enhance communication and user experience for people with disabilities.
Want to get an overview of VMware’s D&I mission and programs? Visit us at https://www.vmware.com/company/diversity.html.
Because today, it’s not only about creating a diverse and inclusive culture in the office. It’s also about creating a safe and supportive community wherever we may be working.