Innovative Models for Change
Catalyst’s series of Practices describe innovative organizational efforts that provide promising examples for our supporter organizations. While every organization’s culture is unique, our Practices help supporters and the business community learn how organizations, including those with Catalyst Award-winning initiatives, have tackled a variety of diversity, inclusion, and business challenges.
Catalyst defines its Practices as strategies that support diversity and inclusion efforts, including both programs specific to a group or region, and broad, company-wide strategies that further the advancement of women and other diverse groups.
More than 100 Practices from organizations around the world are currently available to Catalyst supporters.
Practice Spotlight: Sodexo
Sodexo is focused on increasing the number of women executives globally: by 2020, the company aims to have women comprise 35% of its top 1,200 executives, with the goal of 40% by 2025. To help meet these goals, Sodexo looked at the gender composition of its own teams and their associated business results to make a stronger case for why managers and leaders should consider gender diversity in hiring and promoting talent. The company found that gender-balanced teams—those with 40%–60% women in management—had higher key performance indicator (KPI) results than other teams.
Each year, Catalyst sets strategic priorities based on our research, our supporters’ areas of interest, and new developments in the workplace and global markets. Catalyst experts use these priorities to determine what kinds of Practices will be most valuable to our supporters, and identify promising examples of these through our staff, network, and research. We then gather materials about these initiatives, which we evaluate based on our robust knowledge of programs and using our Catalyst Award models and criteria to help determine merit.
As a next step, the team contacts select organizations to learn about their Practices. If we determine that it is appropriate to write a formal Practice, we write it in accordance with Catalyst’s editorial guidelines and in close collaboration with the organization. We never release proprietary information without prior approval.
Catalyst Practices Recognition Program
The Catalyst Practices Recognition Program, launched in 2013, is a global model that allows us to more formally recognize Practice work related to topical themes identified by Catalyst. In 2013 we recognized four Practices that focused on sponsorship as an intervention.
For fiscal year 2014, we focused on Practices that help women and other diverse groups advance at various career stages—early, mid, and advanced. These efforts vary depending on the target population and organization’s focus. Example activities include diversity recruitment, leadership development, mentoring and sponsorship, work-life effectiveness supports, and board preparation programs.
The following Practices received 2014 recognition:
Making the Most of our Practices
As you review a practice, consider the following questions:
What are the key elements of the practice that make it effective?
What kinds of data does the organization track?
How does the organization assess the impact of the practice?
Are there specific elements of the program that would not work in my organization’s culture? How might they be adjusted to fit my organization’s needs?
Are there elements of the practice that are specific to the region in which it is implemented? How might those be tailored to the different regional and/or cultural contexts in which my organization operates?
What is the role of the organization’s senior leadership?
Can my organization make a strong business case for this type of program, policy, or activity? What was this organization’s business case?
What unique diversity and inclusion, talent management, or overall business program or effort is your organization currently working on? Let us know! We may want to highlight your great work in one of our research reports, tools, or other products. Email the Practices Team or call us at +1 212 514 7600.