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What is an Employee Network Group?

Employee Networks are formed by colleagues that share common race, gender, background, or experience, but membership is open to everyone.

Each has an executive sponsor as well as the support of the Diversity and Inclusion Department.
Network members come together to support each other, the company, its diversity, inclusion goals, and the community. An Employee Network Groups mission has a business purpose.
Air Products and Chemicals, Inc. (2008). Employee network groups. Retrieved from http://www.airproducts.com/~/media/Files/PDF/company/employee-networks-brochure.ashx

Before starting any ENG, you MUST plan ahead!


1. What is your business need for introducing Employee Network Groups? 2. Do you allow ENGs to use the company logo and brand? 3. How much funding, if any, is provided to the groups? 4. Once some groups are recognized and granted support, more groups will seek similar status. When do you stop?

5. What issues will be discussed?

Bye, P. (2003). Developing and implementing employee network groups. MDB Group. Retrieved from http://www.mdbgroup.com/article-employee-network-groups.html#pdf-copy

Organizations currently using ENGs

Sodexo, Inc. New York Life Insurance AT&T Air Products and Chemicals, Inc.

Microsoft

3M

Benefits of ENGs
ENGs can add significant value for the employees who participate, the external communities in which you interact, and your organizations bottom-line results. Employees who participate in ENG meetings get unique networking and learning opportunities. Employees acquire practical project management skills by organizing professional development workshops and community involvement work.
Bye, P. (2003). Developing and implementing employee network groups. MDB Group. Retrieved from http://www.mdbgroup.com/article-employee-network-groups.html#pdf-copy

Benefits Continued
Bringing talent in: Getting and keeping new employees Building current talent: Broadening awareness among employees Showcasing talent: Being good neighbors and community members

Connecting people: Communicating, networking, and building relationships


Air Products and Chemicals, Inc. (2008). Employee network groups. Retrieved from http://www.airproducts.com/~/media/Files/PDF/company/employee-networks-brochure.ashx

Potential Risks of ENGs


ENGs can foster divisiveness and generate conflict (Digh, 2001).

The types of interests that will be recognized by the ENG (Bye, 2003).
The ENG might get too independent (Bye, 2003).
Bye, P. (2003). Developing and implementing employee network groups. MDB Group. Retrieved from http://www.mdbgroup.com/article-employee-network-groups.html#pdf-copy Digh, P. (2001). Well-managed employee networks add business value. The Center of Association Leadership (ASAE). Retrieved from http://www.asaecenter.org/Resources/whitepaperdetail.cfm?ItemNumber=12174

My Recommendation
I recommend that the company incorporates Employee Network Groups!

Why Incorporate ENGs?


Having things in common with colleagues helps people connect and feel comfortable exchanging ideas and discussing challenges.
Interacting within the structure of a Network, with its clear vision and goals, increases personal productivity and satisfaction while strengthening our diversity and inclusion goals.