I got back last night from BCG’s annual Ethnic Diversity Retreat (it’s more like a mini-conference) in Chicago. The retreat is part of the firm’s diversity initiatives - in particular the Black/African American Initiative and Hispanic/Latino Initiative - that in a nutshell are meant to improve diversity across a variety of dimensions within the firm.

It was great to see how important the initiatives are to BCG and that the firm is interested in doing more than just talking the talk. That much was obvious given the resources that went into the event, from a planning, execution, and participation standpoint. There were a number of senior leaders who attended and participated, including Rich Lesser, the Chairman of the Americas, and Hans-Paul Bürkner, the CEO. And it wasn’t token participation…you could literally walk up to any of them and start up a conversation.

A few of the highlights of the event for me were:

  • The opportunity to build relationships with a lot of nice folks from different offices in the firm, informally and during the “team building” competition
  • An externally-led workshop on developing your professional image and personal branding (a favorite topic of mine)
  • The discussions that took place on how to build on and improve the diversity initiatives (that got me pumped to help out more)

I’m really glad that I got the opportunity to participate in the retreat and contribute some thoughts on how to move the initiatives forward. And I’m glad that the company is so committed to doing the same. That is just one in a long list of reasons that I’m grateful to be a part of Henderson and Friends.