Our JTM community continues to meet regularly on our DEI efforts. We are making progress, but, naturally, there are times when we feel we’re not moving fast enough or making a big enough change. It’s important to acknowledge that — and to challenge ourselves (and each other) to keep pushing forward.
We’ve been focusing on the following since February when we last provided an update.
We participated in The Brand Lab’s Fearless Training — a series of 4 workshops on race, identity, and inclusion.
- We talked about how race and ethnicity affect your lived experiences
- We examined intent versus impact; discussed examples of micro-aggressions, and addressed biases
- We looked at what it means to have and recognize personal privilege; and
- We worked to identify ways to move from being allies to active accomplices.
- We’re grateful to The Brand Lab team for guiding us through theses workshops.
We updated our Parental Leave Policy to provide the same benefits to all parents, including language that recognizes all family structures. While we have always provided these types of benefits, it was important to formally document these benefits, and in the process, recognize that not all families fit into a few perfectly crafted descriptors.
We dusted off our Volunteer Paid Hours Program. Each JTM employee is allotted 12 hours of paid time off to volunteer at local organizations during work hours. We’ve started to highlight organizations people might be interested in volunteering with in our bi-weekly agency newsletter.
We’ve been working exceptionally hard on an internship program that we’re excited to launch in the coming year. This is a 9-week program that will give 5 applicants the opportunity to work together with JTM teams to learn the business. The program will be launching in June with a call for applications beginning in late January or early February. We will place a special focus on BIPOC and underserved students.
Our internship will be a highly structured program designed to give participants a well-rounded understanding of all agency disciplines and the tools, guidance and networking connections needed to start and succeed in advertising. More to come!
We recently surveyed our team to update our demographic data as part of our commitment to change with the goal of comparing it to the data we reported in August of 2020. Whereas last year we had over 90% of our team reporting, this year only 77% chose to report. This has prompted us to begin looking at different ways of monitoring our progress. We’re sharing the data here but will stop short of drawing conclusions.
Our focus in the next several months will be to bring our internship program to fruition, to double down on how we hire and recruit differently and to establish concrete ways we can measure real progress.
We continue to find ways to listen to all voices and have been working harder to hear the quiet ones recently. It’s important to us that we make JT Mega a comfortable place for everyone. That we embrace our differences and avoid putting people in boxes. That people feel valued and respected and that we unite rather than divide.