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At the forefront of Sprint’s inclusion efforts are its Employee Resource Groups (ERGs). ERGs are voluntary groups that any employee, regardless of race, national origin, gender, sexual orientation, past or current military status, or physical location, may join. ERG members learn and practice leadership skills, network with diverse groups of people (both inside and outside the company), and get insights into new areas of the business. ERGs also provide members with mentoring opportunities and ERG-sponsored training. ERG programs ultimately benefit Sprint as a whole by strengthening the skill sets of individual employees. From an external perspective, ERGs help Sprint identify and contact diverse groups of customers. In addition, ERG-run community-service projects strengthen Sprint’s presence and reputation in key communities.
Sprint’s Employee Resource Groups (ERGs) are a crucial component of our overall inclusion strategy. They are self-initiated, voluntary groups of employees who come together to support common goals and interests, which are aligned with our company's vision and values. All ERGs promote inclusion, open dialogue, learning, and constructive contribution.
ERGs are open to all Sprint employees. The groups serve as internal organizations with a shared mission of facilitating positive change, networking across organizations, and developing initiatives that benefit the entire Sprint community.
The core objectives for each ERG include:
In addition to receiving support from the Office of Inclusion and Diversity, each ERG receives leadership and assistance from executive champions and an advisory board.
Sprint has six ERGs, each with a different cultural focus (but open to all Sprint employees):
In total, 9% of Sprint’s employee base participates in one or more ERGs.
In 2009, ERGs were particularly busy promoting inclusion within Sprint and beyond. ERGs launched Sprint’s Diverse Leaders Forum, an in-person and online event where Sprint employees can hear from diverse corporate and community leaders. ERGs also sponsored professional-development courses over the course of the year on topics ranging from diversity in the workplace to mentoring to doing business in Asia. In addition, ERGs helped their fellow employees celebrate many culturally relevant holidays and events.
ERG members have access to a number of professional-development programs. Two of the most popular examples are the ERG Mentoring Program and the ERG Officer Development Program.
The ERG Mentoring Program provides exempt and non-exempt employees focused on career development and networking an opportunity to access mentoring through a number of different channels. The program gives ERG members training and guidance they can use to advance their careers and broaden their professional networks.
Each ERG is led by a team of four employee officers (President, Vice President, Secretary and Finance Officer). The ERG Officer Development Program is a two-year development program for these officers. In addition to leading a national cross-functional employee segment, the program provides curriculum, professional development, mentoring and feedback for officers in order to further their leadership skills and increase Sprint’s talent pipeline.
Workplace culture is driven in large part by the culture that individual employees bring into the work environment. Sprint’s ERGs work to recognize and celebrate relevant cultural events over the course of the year. These events provide fellow employees not only with enjoyment but also the opportunity to learn more about the importance of inclusion and specific cultural observances, thereby celebrating the differences that make us all unique.
Some of the events celebrated by Sprint’s ERGs include: