HP Innovation Issue 18: Summer 2021 | Page 13

Annette Friskopp / Global Head of Specialty Printing & Technology Solutions
really listen to their employees , which is something HP does really well . Another thing companies can do is have allies , HR representatives , and LGBTQ + employees attend the [ Out & Equal ] Workplace Summit . Yes , I ’ m on the board of Out & Equal , so I ’ m biased , but I think there ’ s a wealth of information that companies can learn there . It could be : how to foster an employee resource group ; how to have difficult conversations ; how you can create gender-neutral bathrooms ; or what you need to do to support your trans employees .
Why are efforts like these important for businesses ? Not only are they important for LGBTQ + employees , but the data has shown that younger employees entering the workforce are looking to companies to see what kind of inclusive efforts they have . New entrants are choosing where they want to work based on inclusion practices .
A key message I want people to understand is that it ’ s about equity , not about taking anything away from anyone else . It ’ s about , “ How do we make workplaces that are truly inclusive for everyone ?” Intersectionality , or finding common ground , is so important .
As you mentioned , it all starts with the act of listening . Everyone has to recognize that they have something to learn from others . The only way that we ’ re going to have our employees come to work and fully thrive and contribute to their teams is if we understand where they ’ re at , what issues they ’ re facing , and then try to address those . I think that ’ s what every employee wants , right ? They want to have a
job where they ’ re challenged and they ’ re able to grow and show off their best talents . As managers , we have to create an opportunity for that to happen .
What do you think HP gets right when it comes to diversity , equity , and inclusion ? HP is speaking up on certain difficult topics that are so important to our communities . There ’ s been an evolution to the point where companies recognize that diversity is a business imperative and having diverse teams is actually adding benefit
“A key message I want people to understand is that it ’ s about equity , not about taking anything away from anyone else .”
to the bottom-line profitability of the company . HP is making that clear — from the senior leadership on down . The company also fosters community with more than 100 global and local Business Impact Networks where HP employees have a space where they can discuss their uniqueness , find camaraderie , and discover interconnectivity and support with other groups . I ’ m glad to be working at a company that ’ s standing up and saying what ’ s important for humanity . — Leigh-Ann Jackson