It’s been several weeks since solid black images filled social media feeds around the world, signifying people coming together to quiet the usual trending topics in favor of amplifying the voices of the Black community, in a time where those voices are too often being underrepresented.
Shortly after that, the Mindstream Media Group ACTION committee first met to discuss the current state of social injustice we’re seeing play out in America, to have difficult discussions with our colleagues around race and race relations in our country and to formulate ways we can make an impact – both within our agency environment and beyond.
In the coming weeks and months, we will be expanding the conversation, via a phased approach, to include the rest of our agency in the initiatives outlined below. This is just a start; the conversation is truly never-ending. Our hope is that these next steps will pave the way for all of us at Mindstream Media Group to gain a better understanding of the injustice happening around us and prompt us to do our part to foster equal representation of all people.
- Phase 1: Internal Reflection and Discussion
- As one of our first initiatives, we will be forming small, internal groups to facilitate uncomfortable conversations within our work environment, focused on specific topics, tasks and outcomes.
- We’ll then bring our findings back into a larger group discussion with a spokesperson from each small group.
- Phase 2: Community Relations and Outreach
- Begin a social media initiative supporting local minority-owned businesses via our agency’s social presence. Our first initiative will be focused on the Black community.
- Build relationships with local high schools, colleges, and Historically Black Colleges/Universities (HBCUs) – specifically looking into recruitment/internship opportunities, presenting about the advertising industry and possible career paths.
- Look into participating in local high school career days and other opportunities to influence and mentor students, especially within the underrepresented Black community.
- Support a local Black-owned business through strategic media planning.
- Phase 3: Continuous Training and Education
- Seek out guest speakers to present to the agency to improve our understanding of and commitment to diversity and inclusion.
- Gain an understanding of racial diversity within the media agencies we work with and best ways to put our clients in a position to make an informed decision on where they’re spending their media dollars.
As a final takeaway, we shared some tangible ways for our employees to begin having these conversations with themselves and those closest to them. We urge you to take a few minutes to explore the links below, as well:
- Uncomfortable Conversations with a Black Man
- Harvard Implicit Bias Survey
- LinkedIn Courses on Unconscious Bias
- LinkedIn Courses on Diversity, Inclusion and Belonging for All
- Correcting ‘Hamilton’
The Mindstream Media Group ACTION committee looks forward to getting more of our employees involved in the conversation and sharing updates on the progress of our initiatives. Our goal is to develop a long-term plan which will become our enhanced, ongoing commitment to diversity and inclusion going forward. We’re taking ACTION against the tremendous social injustices in our society and hope that our progress inspires you to do the same.