Together we Thrive - Employee Resource Groups (ERGs)
RAI is on a mission to transform the tobacco industry through innovation. We realize that innovative ideas come from creating an environment where all employees feel valued, heard and, most importantly, that they can bring their whole selves work.
As part of RAI’s ‘Together we Thrive’ initiative, we launched eight Employee Resource Groups. These groups are comprised of employees who want to build an inclusive culture. Participation also provides opportunities to connect with each other to create a sense of community within the company. The RAI ERGs are:
LGBTQ+ / Hispanic / African American / Women / Veterans / New Hires / Asian American / Allies
The ‘Allies’ group is a unique addition that speaks directly to the current culture of inclusion and support at RAI. ‘Allies’ are a group of employees that do not directly identify to an ERG through characteristics but are passionate in supporting the group’s members in creating an educated, supportive and inclusive culture.
Two of the ERGs main objectives communicated in charters are:
- Cultivate Culture: They will inform and develop employee communications and events for National Recognition Periods, as well as other internal campaigns and events that are meaningful to them.
- Transform Community: Each group will choose a cause that resonates with them and actively volunteer to influence and support the communities in which we live and work.
ERGs will also serve as consultants to external/internal business activities. In addition, the governance is structured to facilitate senior executive networking and offer personal development opportunities.
The launch of the ERGs have been met with excitement from employees. Over 180 employees signed up during the initial launch events in August and the numbers are climbing.
Inclusion and diversity are the keys to unlocking innovative ideas – because when you bring your whole self to work it opens minds, increases creativity and empowers us to make amazing things happen.