Deloitte Says It’s Time To End Affinity Groups

Does your company have a bunch of “affinity” groups? For instance, a women’s group, a gay group, or an African American group? Lots of companies do. The idea is that if you bring people who share characteristics together they can help each other succeed.

Bloomsberg Businessweek reports that Deloitte is moving away from these affinity groups.

With diversity progress stalling in parts of corporate America, Deloitte is beginning to shift away from traditional approaches built around gender, race, or sexual orientation and instead working to get a broader buy-in, particularly from white males. After 24 years, WIN, the women’s initiative at Deloitte, will end. Over the next 18 months the company will also phase out Globe, which supports gay employees, and groups focused solely on veterans or minority employees. In their place will be so-called inclusion councils that bring together a variety of viewpoints to work on diversity issues.

To keep reading, click here: Deloitte Says It’s Time To End Affinity Groups

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4 thoughts on “Deloitte Says It’s Time To End Affinity Groups

  1. How about letting the groups themselves decide whether or not to continue, as opposed to simply regressing to the pre-affinity-group status quo?

  2. I wonder who originally broached this idea and who made this decision. Was it a “diverse” group of employees or a bunch of white, cis het men.

    This isn’t a binary choice, and it doesn’t have to be a divisive situation. I have an engineer friend who recently canme out at workplace as a trans woman. Her therapist, with mutual permission, introduced her to another trans woman, an executive at her large corporation. Knowing another woman like herself, in the same company, who’s faced the same challenges, made it much easier to face her co-workers questions, confusion, whispers and prejudices. Most importantly, for the sake of this discussion, this support helped the corporation retain a highly-skilled, experienced professional.

  3. Wonderful that they’re looking beyond “affinity groups” in their efforts to improve diversity and equity, and wonderful that they recognize that white, cis, hetero folks need to be at the table.

    Not sure why they think broadening their vision and providing support to marginalized groups are mutually exclusive, though.

  4. I find it shocking that isolating people by specific criteria doesn’t further integration. Remember that guy, Martin Luther King Jr? What was it he said? Something about being “…judged by the content of ones character”? For about the last 10-12 years, character has taken a back seat to the color of one’s skin/one’s sexual orientation/one’s transgenderism.
    If one stops looking at and judging everything through the color of racism/sexual orientation/gender identity, wouldn’t that go a long way to help integration?

    Sometimes, a spade is simply a specific type of shovel, nothing more.

    Providing support to marginalized groups is different than segregating groups.

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