At Schibsted, we believe in empowering all kinds of people, leaving no human behind. That includes making sure all of our employees are comfortable bringing their whole selves to work.
In an effort to be the best workplace to be you, we have employee resource groups (ERG) to contribute to our culture of belonging. The first group is one for the LGBTQ+ community and allies, who can help to amplify unheard voices, call out barriers and biases that can inhibit progress and act as role models in their commitment to diversity, inclusion and belonging. This very important group is spearheaded by Aaron Kroon, who will help make sure everyone working at Schibsted can express their individuality and share experiences while contributing to an inclusive work environment.
Can you describe the LGBTQ+ community at Schibsted?
We are a group of people from different parts of the organisation who will help ensure everyone working at Schibsted can express their individuality and share experiences while contributing to an inclusive work environment.
We invite our organisation to conversations about what diversity means for them, meaning we’ll make sure to give the diverse voices of Schibsted a platform. Also, as a group, we are diverse and thereby hope to act as role models for the rest of the organisation when it comes to showing the power of diversity in business.
Why are you engaged in the LGBTQ+ community?
To me, it’s about common sense. The main reason why I love to be a leader is that I know I have the opportunity to create change, and I don’t take that lightly. The LGBTQ+ community stands for tolerance, bravery and kindness; to me, those are the cornerstones of a superb work environment.
Looking ahead, what are the most important things for the ERG group for the LGBTQ+ community at Schibsted?
Since we are Schibsteds’ first ERG group we need to set some ground rules and establish how an ERG should ideally function. For this we should have activities and events planned round the year so that our engagement and investment do not feel like a one-off to people, because it’s not. The activities can be as simple as an article, internal and external, or the ones that are a bit more complex like a panel discussion. Schibsted did for example different initiatives this summer, one was local Pride parades in Cracow, Gdańsk, Helsinki, Stockholm, Copenhagen and more.
Another priority task is the engagement of allies. An ally is someone who uses their own privilege and position to push progress for those who don’t share the same privilege. Including allies will be critical and really important in supporting the ERG. By communicating that the ERG is open to allies, we’ll expand the reach of the group, and the more people we’ll get onboard, the more power we’ll have to accomplish change.
What is your advice for a new job seeker who wants to ensure that the company they are applying for works with inclusion and diversity?
Be brave and turn the recruitment process around. Scrutinise the organisational culture. Interview your potential new boss the same way they interview you. Research as much as you can about the DIB strategy and what it means to them on a personal and professional level and look up the mission, vision, and culture statement. Review the company’s website and LinkedIn. Ask around – they will ask for your references so you should ask for theirs.