Originating from every corner of the globe, Canadians represent the world. Loblaw recognizes this diversity as a source of national pride and strength. We strive to reflect this in the products we sell, the people we hire and the workplace culture we create.
We believe in the benefits that a diverse workforce can bring, to help us understand customer needs and provide different perspectives on, and solutions to, business challenges. We encourage our colleagues to offer their various opinions and viewpoints. We value the generations, genders, ethnicities, races, languages, abilities, orientations and skills that our colleagues reflect. Our colleagues, like our customers, are members of our communities.
To guide our diversity efforts, we created our Inclusion Council, which is made up of senior leaders from across the organization. The Council is responsible for championing diversity, setting strategy and goals, and tracking progress. It is focused on three primary goals:
- Ensuring that our stores reflect the ethnicity of the communities in which they are located.
- Increasing the percentage of female Store Managers.
- Hiring more people with disabilities to work in stores and offices.
Through 2011, the Council will focus on these prior goals while expanding to:
- Connect with the lesbian/gay/bi/transgender (LGBT) community, which includes two million Canadians.
- Get to know Aboriginal Peoples because they have a growing workforce (50% of which is under the age of 25) that is ready and looking for jobs.
There are still many areas of diversity that need to be considered, but we are very excited about what’s been done and where we are heading.
Over the past two years, we have worked to increase the number of women in senior positions at stores, primarily by promoting from within the organization. The most dramatic improvement has been among Store Managers. To date, we have achieved a 53.7% increase in female Store Managers compared to when we first started measuring progress in 2008. To improve on these numbers in 2010, we launched a series of women@Loblaw initiatives, including an internal Facebook page, external networking events and an annual conference where we fly in female store managers from across the country to be inspired and receive key insights that they can use for their own development. Please see the video below for a sneak peak from our annual conference.
Diversity and inclusion – they are part of how we do things around here.