Diversity and inclusion, views from the industry: Leendert den Hollander vice president and general manager, and Catherine Gillespie HR director, Coca Cola European Partners (CCEP)

Date : 17 November 2020

What are your key I&D elements?

One of the enablers to ‘Be Yourself, Be Valued, Belong’ is our Inclusion ambassador network ‘#JustBe’. #JustBe is a network of 100 200 volunteer Inclusion ambassadors. These people are passionate change makers who drive inclusion at all levels of the business. Our Inclusion ambassador network has opened up Inclusion as a topic for all parts of our business to embrace, in particular it has been especially good for supply chain, where #JustBe ambassadors are raising awareness of what it means to be Inclusive and driving change locally.

Metrics and analytics are also key to driving our I&D strategy. Measuring company statistics at different levels, functions and locations provides the understanding we need to continue to facilitate change across gender, ethnicity and multi-generation metrics. We run an engagement survey every six months – and we’re seeing significant improvement throughout the business when it comes to our Inclusion and Belonging scores. There’s still a long way to go – but being aware of the key figures is the place to start.

How have you extended your I&D strategy beyond gender?

Our focus has shifted to become more inclusive of other areas of diversity such as culture, heritage, LGBTQ and disabilities. We are constantly doing development sessions and deep dives – in mental health, for example – to see how we can improve. Data isn’t always held on all these areas so it can be challenging to understand who we are attracting and how we can improve further. Also, people are often reluctant to talk about ethnicity and nationality, thinking they’re making a mistake by bringing it up. However, there’s nothing wrong with speaking about ethnicity if you’re not meaning to offend – it’s better to ask the question than to not talk about it.