PR News 2016 Diversity in PR Awards: Organization

Winner: Weber Shandwick

At Weber Shandwick diversity and inclusion is at the heart of the employee experience. An inclusive workplace enhances people’s ability to connect to each other and turns differences into strengths. Open and highly collaborative, it attracts the best minds in the industry and inspires them to come up with concepts and ideas that would be otherwise unimaginable.

Weber Shandwick drives engagement in D&I through its 118-person Diversity Council, which shares ideas and best practices across offices to amplify nationally directed efforts, encourage increased D&I involvement among colleagues and ensure that D&I efforts come alive locally.

Weber Shandwick augmented its partnership with the LAGRANT Foundation by co-hosting local career workshops in multiple cities and extending its joint Straight Talk panel event series, providing opportunities for diverse young women to discuss communications careers with senior women of color. As a result, Weber Shandwick obtained identifying information for 64 guests for potential recruitment and hired two interns from the LAGRANT Foundation.

In addition, Weber Shandwick connected PRSA Foundation and PR Council to the United Negro College Fund to form a partnership and lead development of the PRIME (Public Relations Internship, Mentoring and Education) Program. Its objective is to drive diversity in PR by recruiting from historically black colleges and universities and was piloted in 2015 with 15 sponsors, including American Express, Coca-Cola, Univision and multiple PR agencies.

Weber Shandwick also sponsored ColorComm’s first national conference in 2014, bringing 122,000+ viewers “up close and personal” with industry leaders through a live show using Weber Shandwick’s proprietary real-time storytelling offering, GoLive. Pre-conference engagement-building events were hosted in eight Weber Shandwick offices in 2015. Weber obtained identifying information for 300+ registered guests for recruitment consideration and brought women from four Weber Shandwick offices to participate in a panel.