Our 2021 Commitment To Change

Last year, we joined other agencies to #committochange, and pledged to do more to address the issue of systemic racism facing Black, Indigenous, and People of Color (BIPOC) in our industry. Since we made our 2020 commitment to change, we have taken measures to become an agency that is more reflective of our community, we have learned a lot about ourselves and our blind spots, and we are continuing to take meaningful steps toward our commitments.

Let’s start by looking at the progress we’ve made.

  • We’ve revised the posting process for all open jobs to include posting with The BrandLab, MIMA (locally), and Handshake (a national higher ed recruiting platform that allows us to target Historically Black Colleges and Universities).
  • We’ve instituted The BrandLab Fearless Training for all agency employees to address topics including bias, microaggressions, privilege and effective communication.
  • We’ve formed Collective Allies, an employee-led discussion group which meets regularly to discuss issues related to racial and gender inequity.
  • We’ve continued our long term partnership with the BrandLab and are embedding an Intern from The BrandLab with the CM Account Management team for summer 2021.
  • We’ve increased the diversity among agency interns to take steps toward securing the diversity of Collective Measures and our industry moving forward.

Let’s look at the 2020 data.

Ethnicity

Entire Agency
  • 90% White
  • 5% Hispanic or Latinx
  • 1% Native American or Alaska Native
  • 1% Multiracial
  • 1% Asian
  • 1% African American or Black
Director-Level Employees
  • 93% White
  • 0% Hispanic or Latinx
  • 0% Native American or Alaska Native
  • 7% Multiracial
  • 0% Asian
  • 0% African American or Black
Leadership-VP & Above
  • 100% White
  • 0% Hispanic or Latinx
  • 0% Native American or Alaska Native
  • 0% Multiracial
  • 0% Asian
  • 0% African American or Black

Gender

Entire Agency
  • 64% Women Identifying
  • 36% Men Identifying
Director-Level Employees
  • 73% Women Identifying
  • 27% Men Identifying
Leadership-VP & Above
  • 67% Women Identifying
  • 33% Men Identifying

We’re committed to doing more.

Looking at these stats, we recognize we have a long way to go. But we’ve done a lot of listening and learning over the past year, so while the data doesn’t yet reflect the kind of meaningful change we’re working towards, we’re continuing to improve our agency and remain committed to doing better.

What we’ve learned so far

  • One year is not enough to make the kind of measurable progress we want to see. We will not stop working on this.
  • We have to make a very intentional effort to walk the walk. Change won’t happen as quickly as we’d like unless we continue to make it an ongoing priority.
  • We have to continue to make time – and create safe spaces – to have the hard conversations.
  • Working towards our goal has been very unifying, even though, at times, the training and conversations were uncomfortable.
  • Finding a balance between organic, employee-led conversations, like Collective Allies, and The BrandLab’s more formal training is essential to ensure that we are all doing everything we can to change.