Winners of Canada’s Best Diversity Employers for 2015

When you ask Canadians what “diversity” means to them, you are likely elicit a wide range of responses.  People have different views of what diversity means in practical terms, but there’s one thing everyone can agree on: making people from diverse backgrounds feel at home has become a value that runs deep in the fabric of Canadian society.  The winners of the annual Canada’s Best Diversity Employers competition have been announced, recognizing the organizations that do the most to promote diversity and inclusion in the workplace.

“Promoting diversity and inclusiveness is one of Canada’s defining values,” says Kristina Leung, lead editor on the Canada’s Best Diversity Employers competition and Senior Editor at Mediacorp Canada Inc., which manages the project. “Employers understand that they have an important role to play in making workplaces open to Canadians from a wide variety of backgrounds – and that their organizations are stronger when workplaces reflect the diversity of Canadian society.”

Now entering its ninth year, the Canada’s Best Diversity Employers competition recognizes the leading organizations when it comes to creating inclusive workplaces for employees from five diverse groups: women; visible minorities; persons with disabilities; Aboriginal peoples; and lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender (LGBT) peoples.  Employers are selected by the editors at Mediacorp based on submissions to the annual Canada’s Top 100 Employers, now in its 16th year.

“These employers make inclusiveness part of their organizational DNA,” says Richard Yerema, Managing Editor of the Canada’s Top 100 Employers competition.  “They encourage employees to ‘bring their whole self’ to work, creating an environment where employees feel valued and welcome.  As Canadians, we often don’t realize how much progress we have made toward an inclusive society, especially compared to many areas of the world, and these employers are showing the way.”

Detailed reasons for selection were also released at



SOURCE Mediacorp Canada Inc.

theFashionSpot Unveils Fashion Week Fall 2015 Diversity Report

TheFashionSpot (tFS) (, the web’s largest fashion-focused community and fashion editorial site, recently published its Fashion Week Fall 2015 Diversity Report—an analysis intended to monitor how frequently models of color are utilized in runway shows. After conducting a thorough deep-dive into the Fall 2015 runway shows fromNew York,London,Milan andParis, theFashionSpot once again found an inordinate divide between white models and models of color. Out of 9,538 model bookings in 373 shows, 80% were white — a ratio that closely resembles Spring 2015 (83%).

As with seasons past,New Yorkstood out as the most diverse Fashion Week city examined, with 75.6% white models and 24.4% models of color. Compared with last season, white models were down 3.5% and theLatinapresence increased 2.9%. However,Milanwas the least diverse in every category, with white models dominating the runways at 84.2%. Milan’s second highest group represented were black models at a dismal 5.9%, followed closely by Asian models at 5.7%, while Latinas made up 1.6%. All in all, models of color were represented 15.8% of the time—a 12.1% increase from last season. Below is a glimpse of the overall results; a city-by-city breakdown can be found in the report.

Fashion Week Diversity by the Numbers: Percentage of Model Castings During Fall Fashion Week – All Cities

  •     80% – Caucasian
  •     7.4% – Black
  •     7.4% – Asian
  •     2.9% –Latina
  •     2.1% – other
  •     0.2% – Middle Eastern

Most Diverse Shows, Fall 2015

  •     62.5% – Ashish
  •     61.9% – Zac Posen
  •     46.3% – Kenzo
  •     42.8% – Misha Nonoo
  •     42.1% – Balmain

Least Diverse Shows, Fall 2015

  •     0% – Sharon Wauchob
  •     0% – Yang Li
  •     0% – Ann Demeulemeester
  •     4.8% – Costume National
  •     5.3 % – Sophie Theallet

“It’s promising that a major fashion house like Balmain appeared this season on the list of most diverse shows, alongside designers like Asish, Zac Posen and Kenzo who have great castings,” said Amina Akhtar, editorial director, theFashionSpot. “Our hope is that these reports can show that designers can change the fashion industry, which is sadly still suffering from a diversity problem. More models of color were cast this season, but not nearly enough. We can certainly do better.”

Check out the full report here:


Goldcorp, 1st mining company to sign Catalyst Accord

Goldcorp Inc. has joined the list of Catalyst Accord signatories, becoming the 28th company—and first from the mining sector—to sign the Accord, pledging its support for accelerating change in the boardroom. The move signals an important step forward for the mining industry, a leading contributor to the Canadian economy.

“We celebrate Goldcorp for sending a powerful message to the business community, and the mining sector in particular, that the status quo is no longer acceptable when it comes to the lack of women on boards,” says Alex Johnston, Executive Director, CatalystCanada. “By publicly committing to boardroom diversity and setting goals, Goldcorp serves as a role model for others, demonstrating that leadership and accountability start at the top.”

“It has never been more evident globally that women leaders are essential to business success,” says Chuck Jeannes, President and CEO, Goldcorp Inc. “Gender diversity on boards helps drive better business results and strengthensCanada’s economic competitiveness. We encourage organizations across all industries to develop their own strategies and action plans for accelerating the advancement of women in leadership.”

The minerals exploration and mining industry faces many challenges including a pending skilled labour shortage in the coming years. Many experts agree that attracting and retaining traditionally underrepresented groups such as women is an important strategy for the future.

“While the Canadian mining industry has made great strides in increasing the number of women to its workforce in recent years, outperforming several other resource sectors in this area, it remains a male-dominated industry. The mining sector is working hard to diversify its workforce and boards, but it takes leaders like Goldcorp to accelerate progress and enact meaningful change,” says Pierre Gratton, President and CEO, the Mining Association of Canada.

The Catalyst Accord calls for participating companies to help lift the average representation of women on FP500 boards to 25% by 2017 by setting their own goals. Catalyst makes available to all Accord signatories its directory of CEO-sponsored board-ready women, along with other resources to aid progress.

“The leadership demonstrated by all of our Catalyst Accord signatory companies is a significant step in accelerating change around the boardroom table, but there is still much work to be done. We encourage all FP500 corporations to set goals and commit to the Catalyst Accord,” says Ms. Johnston.



Women in the Workplace: A Culture of Inclusion

In the quest for innovation, not a single person or talent can be wasted. Creating a talented and diverse workforce is vital to the success of our company and to our ability to deliver the best medicines to the people who need them most. In order to achieve this goal, we strive to create a culture of inclusion, where each and every employee feels comfortable, valued, and respected. Championing the skilled female workforce within Lilly represents a critical part of this mission.

Through the years we have been blessed to have dedicated employees who have worked to shape Lilly’s culture. Women have been a central part of our work at Eli Lilly and Company since Colonel Eli Lilly opened the doors of his small manufacturing facility in 1876.  In fact, one of the first ever Lilly employees was bottler and finisher, Caroline Kruger.  Building a culture of inclusion has been part of our company’s heritage since the start, but the mission is not over.

Over the years, we’ve made it our goal to continually improve and enhance our diversity programs and opportunities. Programs such as the female leadership diversity strategy prove critical to building strong female leaders, and an engaged female workforce around the world.  As a result, we have built a tremendous female workforce, and have benefited from the women who hold 36% of Lilly’s manager and executive positions, as well as one-third of our Board of Directors positions.

Our recognition in the area of workforce diversity – from the National Association of Female Executives naming Lilly a Top 50 Company for Executive Women; to being named one of the 50 Leading Companies for Women in APEC; to a 20th straight year appearing on Working Mothers Magazine’s  100 Best Companies List – highlighted our global commitment to empowering our workforce. Whether it is through the Taxicab Safety Initiative in India, or workplace flexibility and flexible scheduling for all global affiliates, Lilly continues to dedicate itself to the development of policies that serve to support the career ambitions of our employees.

Companies can only succeed when they commit themselves to the success of their employees. At Lilly, we have sought to do exactly that. The women at Lilly provide strong and valuable leadership to our company, and their achievements are a testament to what can be accomplished when companies strive to recognize the immense talent within their female workforce.

This  guest post comes from Monique Hunt McWilliams, Eli Lilly and Company’s Chief Diversity officer.


WCT Annual Awards announced

Women in Communications and Technology (WCT) has announced that 15 outstanding leaders and achievers are this year’s recipients of its coveted Annual Awards. They are being recognized for their efforts to advance women’s representation and achievement inCanada’s information, communications and technology sector.

“We were overwhelmed by the number of nominations we received and how deserving the candidates were,” says Leanne Park, senior director, professional services and sales support at Cogeco Cable and chair of the WCT awards program and gala. “Qualified, high-calibre women are clearly out there, because we’re growing our awards program every year.Canadahas no shortage of women with the skills, experience and ambition to be in the top ranks of our ICT sector.”

Recognizing women’s success and leadership is critical to ongoing efforts to recruit and retain women, especially in ICT. Research by organizations such as Catalyst shows that despite comparable education, women continue to trail men at every stage of their careers.

“We want to create a ripple event, letting these women’s achievements roll out to inspire more like them,” says Joanne Stanley, executive director of WCT. “By celebrating leaders like these 15 award recipients and creating opportunities for up-and-comers with our Protégé Project, WCT is showing the best of what women can do, how to be successful, and why diverse companies are the ones that are truly thriving inCanada’s digital economy.”

The awards will be presented at WCT’s  Annual Awards Ceremony and Gala at Ottawa’s Fairmont Chateau Laurier on April 22, 2015.

The 2015 Annual Award recipients  include Mary Ann Turcke, Bell Media (Woman of the Year). The Leadership Excellence Awards were given to Borika Vucinic,Bell, Clare Beckton,  Centre for Women in Politics and Public Leadership,  Carleton University,  Dervla Kelly, Shaw Media, Heidi Davidson, BlackBerry Ltd.,Kelly Gillis, Industry Canada,Laurel Broten, Nova Scotia Business Inc, Lisa Lyons, Kids Can Press, Corus Entertainment, Nikki Moffat,  Bell Media,Pat DiVittorio, Bell Media, Robin Hildebrand,Golden West Broadcasting Ltd, Sandra Saric, Information and Communications Technology Council, Sandy McIntosh, TELUS, Trina Alexson, Cisco Canada, and Ulrike Bahr-Gedalia, Digital Nova Scotia.

WCT and Microsoft join forces to boost women in technology

Women in Communications and Technology has announced the launch of a new relationship with Microsoft Canada, one that promises to raise the profile of women, their roles and their contributions to Canada’s technology sector.

“We’re delighted to welcome Microsoft Canada as a national sponsor,” said WCT executive director Joanne Stanley. “At WCT, we push the boundaries of diversity in leadership excellence with our Protégé Project and annual Leadership Excellence Awards. Microsoft Canada is already an active partner in these programs. It supports and shares WCT’s values, demonstrating innovation and diversity in leadership.”

Microsoft Canada is a strong promoter of diversity in the ICT sector with key themes related to representation, inclusion and innovation. It is committed to building a diverse workforce of future leaders, collaborating with academic institutions, professional organizations and national advocacy partners like WCT. Microsoft Canada President Janet Kennedy is an executive sponsor with WCT’s Protégé Project and Vice President Staci Trackey Meagher sits on WCT’s national board of directors.

“I am tremendously proud of our support for Women in Communications and Technology,” said Janet Kennedy. “Fostering greater levels of diversity in the senior levels of our sector is an objective that will boost Canada’s strength and prowess in business and technology on a global level. This partnership reflects Microsoft Canada’s long-standing commitment to promoting innovation and excellence in ICT, and developing rising-star women who will lead our industry on into the future.”

About Women in Communications and Technology Women in Communications and Technology 

(WCT) is a national association committed to helping women in Canada learn, build strong relationships and advance in telecommunications, media and technology. WCT provides opportunities for its members to network, be mentored, and get access to targeted educational opportunities relevant to their career advancement.

The Mentor Quiz

Mentors guide, motivate, inspire and support – enabling the mentee to achieve their goals and aspirations. Mentors also have a genuine interest in paying-it-forward by sharing their knowledge and experiences with a mentee.

An effective mentor should have several core attributes. This quiz will help you evaluate your mentor or mentors to determine the strength of your relationship.

Score each question: 1 = Never, 2 = Sometimes, 3 = Always.

  1. Is your mentor really listening to you?

Score: _____

  1. Has your mentor done what you are trying to do?

Score: ___

  1. Has your mentor provided you with feedback that you can use to improve yourself?

Score: ___

  1. Does your mentor ask questions to help you figure out solutions for yourself?

Score: ___

  1. Has your mentor recommended a book, article or video that is relevant to your needs?

Score: ___

  1. Has your mentor introduced you to someone in his or her network who could also help you?

Score: ___

  1. Do you leave mentoring conversations feeling inspired?

Score: ___

  1. Has your mentor observed you performing a skill (e.g. chairing a meeting, practicing your interview skills)?

Score: ___

  1. Has your mentor provided you with encouragement?

Score: ___

  1. Is your mentor available to meet you within their schedule?

Score: ___

  1. Does your mentor respond to your emails or voice mails between meetings?

Score: ___

  1. Do you feel that your conversations are productive and that they are meeting your needs?

Score: ___

  1. Does your mentor help you to think and act beyond your comfort zone?

Score: ___

  1. Does your mentor check-in with you occasionally to see how things are progressing?

Score: ___

  1. Does your mentor follow through on the things that they say they are going to do?

Score: ___

Total Score: ___


If you scored 35 – 45. You have a great mentor; take time to nurture this relationship as it may last a lifetime.

If you scored 25 – 34. You have a good mentor but he or she needs to work on some things. You may want to provide them with feedback about one of the items from this quiz to see how receptive they are about further developing their mentoring skills.

If you scored 24 or less. Your mentor may not be the right fit for you. You may want to establish a more informal mentoring relationship by reaching out only on an as needed basis while keeping your eyes open for a new mentor.

Remember though, good mentoring relationships are a two-way street. If you want a good relationship with your mentor, you need to be a good mentee. Stay tuned for The Mentee Quiz.

Shawn Mintz is the president of MentorCity, a social mentoring site that connects people to meaningful mentoring relationships. Shawn has created award-winning mentoring initiatives that have helped thousands of people to achieve greater success. For further information, please visit  

Antaeus Rent A Car : a journey of inclusiveness

According to the Worldbank, the latest estimate of women to men in the workforce was estimated at 34% for 2013 in India–as compared to 91% in Iceland and 20% in Afghanistan, with the rest of the world falling between these two extremes. Within this number, certain industries lend themselves to a more equitable gender distribution (nursing, teaching etc) rather than others (military, construction etc). The chauffeur-driven car rental industry is relatively new and unstructured in Indiaand is a male-dominated industry due to the preponderance of male chauffeurs and the people who deal with them.

Into this male dominated world, Antaeus Rent A Car was born in 1996 – founded by a woman entrepreneur. Today, Antaeus employs more than 40% female staff in Accounts, Administration and Sales. The company’s founder, Uma Bahl, had a long corporate career in India and the Middle East, in Administration, Airlines, Human Resources and Travel & Tourism. The decision to found Antaeus was taken after identifying a niche in the ground transportation market.

Below are excerpts from an interview with Uma Bahl.

Q. Could you tell us why you started Antaeus?

A. I had returned to India in 1993 after a long stint in the Middle East and was looking for opportunities in the Travel and Tourism sector. I worked with Modiluft, SITA Travels and finally Kuoni India before deciding to branch out for myself in 1996. I had always wanted to be an entrepreneur and based on my research, there seemed to be a lack in the ground transportation market at that time; hence Antaeus was born. We originally started working out of a small office in Saki Naka, Mumbai, with 2 employees and 2 cars.

Q. Were you ever daunted by the fact that this was a male-dominated industry?

A. Honestly, it wasn’t even something I considered. It was just a business that I wanted to get into and did. Only much later did people start commenting on how few women there were in this field. All I can say about that is that there are very few recognised women entrepreneurs in India in general and we need more.

Q. What were some of the challenges you faced as a start-up?

A. That is another new term – “start-up”! When we started the business, our main challenges were to find and train quality drivers, acquire cars and find business, which were pretty much normal challenges. Then another thing that was a challenge then but not now was communications. There were no mobile phones at that time so drivers had to check in from time to time to let us know where they were!

Q. What were some of the innovations Antaeus launched?

A. To address the communications challenge, we pioneered pagers for drivers – this was a new concept that quickly caught on with other companies in the sector until it became an industry standard. At that time also, there were no Pan-India service providers and Antaeus was one of the first to offer services outside of our home city, Mumbai. Today, we offer services in over 90 cities across India.

Q. What would you consider as your biggest strength?

A. Our biggest strength is definitely the team. We have many employees who have been with us over 14 years and there is tremendous loyalty both ways. Not counting drivers, we have almost 50% of our employees being female. We are an equal opportunity employer and do not discriminate on the basis of gender, religion or other factors.

Q. What do you consider will be the future milestones for the company in the next 5 years?

A. That’s a great question. Firstly, we are working on strengthening our web positioning. Our website was only launched last year and since then has been showing excellent growth in terms of visitor numbers so we expect web bookings to grow to 50% of our business in the next 5 years. Secondly, we want to maximise opportunities in our existing business by attracting new clients, opening new offices (in Pune, Chennai and Hyderabad) and investing in Sales and Marketing operations in all these cities. Thirdly, in revenue terms, we intend to triple our revenue in the next 5 years. Finally, in people terms, we want to grow our non-driver employee strength to have at least 60% female employees.

About Antaeus Rent A Car Pvt Ltd
Antaeus Rent A Car Pvt Ltd has been in operation since 1996 and serves over 300 corporate entities in India and abroad with car rental services.



New Zealand female millennials most confident of any generation, says PwC survey

PwC surveyed 8,756 female millennials (women born between 1980-1995) from 75 countries  to find out how they feel about the world of work and their career.

The report – The female millennial: A new era of talent- New Zealand findings – reveals that New Zealand female millennials rank opportunities for competitive wages and other financial incentives as the most attractive employer trait (63%, compared with 52% globally), followed by career progression at 53 per cent and at the same level as their global peers, making female millennials more career confident and ambitious than previous generations.

When it comes to diversity, 90 per cent of New Zealand female millennials seek out employers with a strong record on diversity, equality and inclusion – and while they say employers talk about diversity, 73 per cent do not feel opportunities are really equal for all. Additional findings from PwC’s New Zealand CEO Survey revealed just 32 per cent of New Zealand CEOs have a talent diversity and inclusiveness strategy, lagging behind global counterparts in comparison, with 64 per cent of CEOs globally and 86 per cent of CEOs in Australia having a strategy. Thirty five per cent of those New Zealand companies that don’t have a diversity strategy, have no plans of adopting one this year.

What’s more, 55 per cent of New Zealand millennials believe employers are too male biased when it comes to promoting employees from within.

This compares to global trends where 43 per cent of female millennials believe employers are too male biased– up 14% since 2011. Although millennial women in Spain(60%),France(58%) and Ireland(56%) view employers in their country as the most male biased, they’re followed closely behind by both New Zealand and Australia(55%). In Malaysia(16%) and the Philippines(11%) female millennials are more optimistic.

PwC Partner and Diversity Leader Leo Foliaki says New Zealand businesses may be missing out and practices must change if they want to access to this growing pool of female talent.

“These female millennials are entering the workforce in greater numbers than ever before and are more highly educated, but they have entirely new career mindsets.

“When it comes to earning power and patterns, 92 per cent of New Zealand female millennials are in a dual career couple, with 45 per cent earning as much as their partner or spouse and 23 per cent are the primary earner in their relationship. This means 68 per cent of New Zealand female millennials earn equal to or more than their partner or spouse.”

The research also dispels some significant myths, for example that women leave work to have families.

“The New Zealand female millennial was least likely to have left a former employer because she was starting a family, and most likely due to her work and personal life being out of balance and wanting a role with more flexibility. Employers must commit to inclusive cultures and talent strategies that allow for the ambition of the female millennial from the very beginning of their careers,” he says.

To read more PwC research on millennials, take a look at Next Generation Diversity: Developing tomorrow’s female leadersMillennials at work: Reshaping the workplace in financial services, and Millennials at work: Reshaping the workplace in financial services in Asia.

Nominations for the 2015 RBC Canadian Women Entrepreneur Awards now underway

In celebration of International Women’s Day, RBC and Women of Influence announced the call for nominations for the 2015 RBC Canadian Women Entrepreneur Awards (CWEA). Now in its 23rd year, these awards provide national recognition to Canada’s most accomplished and impactful women entrepreneurs, whose successful businesses and influence contribute so much to the local, national and global economy.

“Through partnerships with Women of Influence and programs like the RBC Canadian Women’s Entrepreneurs Awards (CWEA), we are dedicated to providing national recognition to Canada’s women entrepreneurs,” said Sarah Adams, vice president, Small Business, RBC. “Women entrepreneurs are a true economic force; vital to Canada’s prosperity and an inspiration to us all.”

To date, over 15,000 women from their early 20s to their mid-eighties, from every sector of the economy, have been nominated for these awards. Over 120 Awards have been presented for outstanding entrepreneurial achievement. The following awards are presented; Deloitte Start-Up Award, RBC Momentum Award, TPH Charitable Giving Award, TELUS Trailblazer Award, PROFIT Award for Excellence in Entrepreneurship, and the Micro-Business Award.

The potential boost to economic activity by tapping into the entrepreneurial spirit of women is significant and could sustain women as a source of economic growth in Canada for decades to come.

“Women entrepreneurs have infinite energy to make their world a better place; through innovation, passion and determination they are changing their community, industry and country. Why wouldn’t we dedicate an entire Awards program to celebrating their successes and boosting their impact to reach even greater heights?” said Carolyn Lawrence, President and CEO of Women of Influence Inc. “It’s a win-win.”

For more details on the nomination process, Nomination deadline is May 15.