Celebrating Black History Month has been saved
Life at Deloitte
Celebrating Black History Month
Spotlight on Deloitte’s commitment to inclusion
February 28, 2019
At Deloitte, celebrating Black History Month is an important part of honoring African Americans at Deloitte. It also underscores Deloitte’s mission to foster an inclusive and diverse workforce. However, these celebrations and conversations aren’t just limited to events and programs scheduled for February. It’s a holistic, ongoing approach to ensure that everyone at Deloitte has an opportunity to connect, belong, and grow. Inclusion is who we are and we provide a variety of resources to connect and support all of our professionals. One of these resources is our inclusion councils. We sat down with Thomas Cole, a senior manager in Deloitte Tax LLP’s International Tax practice, a member of Chicago’s Inclusion Council, where he also represents Chicago's Black Employee Network, to learn more about Inclusion at Deloitte and to gather his thoughts on the importance of Black History Month.
What is the purpose of inclusion councils?
The purpose of Deloitte’s inclusion councils is to provide a forum for professionals at Deloitte with similar interests, experiences, and backgrounds to meet, engage, and collaborate while helping to cultivate and sustain an inclusive culture where people may connect, belong, and grow. They seek to demonstrate and bring to life Deloitte’s commitment to its people, community, diversity, and inclusion. Since January 2017, we have seen involvement in our events increase substantially as we have rolled out inclusion councils and encouraged everyone in the office to participate.
How did you get involved?
On the first day I transferred to the Chicago office, a colleague connected me with our employee resource networks. I felt extremely welcomed, and after learning more, I decided to get involved. It is very common for professionals who are new to Deloitte to reach out to me to learn more about inclusion and discuss ways that they can get involved. I really enjoy welcoming new professionals to Deloitte, offering advice on navigating the organization, and helping them to make meaningful connections.
Why do you think it is important to foster a culture of diversity and inclusion at Deloitte?
I truly believe diversity is important to the long-term success of organizations like Deloitte and all businesses. As our clients become more diverse, it will become increasingly important to create and deploy diverse teams comprised of professionals from different backgrounds, who bring different perspectives to the table.
I also believe we need both diversity and inclusion to really drive differentiated and meaningful business outcomes. Attracting and hiring diverse professionals is important, but not enough. We must also be committed to fostering a workplace where they can feel included, respected, and valued.
What does Black History Month mean to you?
For me, Black History Month is a time to remember and reflect on the contributions that black people have made to society. It is a time for recognizing and learning from the obstacles they faced and overcame while celebrating the lasting impact of their achievements.
What activities do you have planned for Black History Month?
This year, we are collaborating with the Chicago chapters of two national organizations to host a game night in late February to celebrate Black History Month. This will be a fun opportunity for professionals to network and learn more about Black History Month and black culture while competing for bragging honors in a variety of interactive games.