Workforce Inclusion Award Winner

GSD&M Affinity Groups & Employee Resource Groups

From the beginning, Community has been at the foundation as well as one of our core values at GSD&M. In 2018, our VP of Diversity & Inclusion created a proprietary one-day small group workshop focusing on race, ethnicity, gender, sexual identification, disability, bias, and racism. These off-site workshops focus on creating safety around uncomfortable conversations via team-building activities. Because over 85% of GSD&Mers completed the #OneTeam Workshop, it was the impetus for transforming nine ERGs, our on-boarding process, the work from anywhere philosophy, our perspective on social justice, and how GSD&Mers self-identity. 

This newfound self-identity with the support of leadership empowered GSD&M to formaliz e and strengthen Employee Resource groups: Black, Hispanic, Asian, Women, LGBTQ+, Parents, Disability, Under 35, & Jewish. The ERG leaders work together to ensure that inclusiveness is represented in the programming. 

Because of COVID- 19, two programs were born: GSD&Mind & Move allowed GSD&Mers well-versed in mindfulness, yoga and dance to program content to help other employees transition to working from anywhere. To augment that, our leadership initially communicated daily and then evolved into a virtual all-agency bi-weekly meeting called “Cross Talk” that continues to this day. During “Cross Talk,” leaders and employees are transparent about client status, production challenges, human resources and operations of GSD&M. By leadership turning to GSD&Mers and vice-versa, we created an elevated version of workforce inclusion with education and empowerment to navigate our new normal.

Through communication and engagement, our employees feel empowered to create safe spaces, start necessary and sometimes difficult conversations, and create a community we’re proud to call our own. Transparent leadership, #OneTeam Workshops, employee resource and ally groups and nurturing communication and community led to an overwhelming positive response in our annual GSD&M Employee survey.

OUT& hosted a virtual PRIDE Jeopardy highlighting the intersectionality of race/ethnicity, sexual orientation and gender identity within the LGBTQ+ community. They also hosted a reading series featuring GSD&M employees reading their favorite inclusive children’s book during lunch on Friday, with our employees’ children joining on the calls to enjoy the content. 

[email protected]&M presented a deeply moving talk shortly after the murder of George Floyd. Panelists shared their stories, including one who personally knew Mr. Floyd. Attendees were asked to count their breaths during an 8 minute 46 second period of silence, the length of time George Floyd was held down before he died. 

WOM&N presented a five- part Financial Literacy lunch series during fall, 2020. Several members were inspired to refinance student loan debt and mortgages, others enrolled in the company benefit legal program to finaliz e their wills and other legal documents. 

GSDyM – Our Hispanic group celebrated Hispanic Heritage Month in October, 2020 with a Loteria and Day of the Dead celebration. 

ASI&N @GSD&M partnered with AAF/Austin to present a free webinar: The “Kung Flu” Effect How Asian- Americans Deal with Xenophobia During a Pandemic. 

&Abled presented Josh Loebner, Director of Strategy at Designsensory and “Compliance Versus Commitment: How to Go Beyond Accessibility with Advertising and Disability.” Josh discussed how and why businesses miss the target on the disabled segment of the consumer economy.


Mosaic Award 2021 Winners