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Leading industry-wide diversity through mentoring

PARTNERSHIP
15.08.2019
7 MIN

Our Alcohol & Coffee business is taking a leading role in an industry-wide diversity and inclusion mentoring program, with research showing mentoring is more effective than other initiatives at promoting workplace inclusivity.

Leading industry-wide diversity through mentoring

Our Alcohol & Coffee business is taking a leading role in an industry-wide diversity and inclusion mentoring program, with research showing mentoring is more effective than other initiatives at promoting workplace inclusivity.

Managing Director for Alcohol & Coffee, Shane Richardson, said a 2016 study by the Harvard Business Review shows that mentoring, self-managed teams and targeted recruitment are far more effective than diversity training at promoting inclusion. “We’re serious about building an inclusive culture so we’re keen to support what works,” Mr Richardson said.

“Evidence from the United States and Europe shows that diverse organisations make better decisions, and mentoring is one of the most effective tools in creating the inclusive culture needed to realise diversity benefits. That’s why we’re supporting the 2019 Drinks Association Inclusive Leadership Program, which matches mentors and mentees from different drinks companies to maximise their opportunities to learn.

“Time and again we hear from mentors that the opportunity to experience situations or challenges from someone else’s perspective is an incredibly valuable lesson for their own leadership style. I think this is especially true in industry-wide programs that bring together mentors and mentees from different functions and different companies. Not only do they provide a fantastic development and recognition opportunity for talented emerging leaders, for us mentoring programs are also an important leadership tool.

“By matching mentors and mentees across companies, we’ll see all the benefits from a traditional mentoring program, with the added advantage of wider cross-industry perspectives. We’re proud to be a major supporter of this program, and look forward to it delivering even stronger diversity outcomes for Australia’s alcohol sector.”

The 2019 Drinks Association Inclusive Leadership Program is managed by Serendis, a provider of structured mentoring programs around Australia. Participating companies select and nominate mentees and mentors, who are then matched with others from different businesses.

Mentees and mentors meet six to eight times on a one-to-one basis, and take part in interactive workshops and group discussions. Launched three years ago, the program was initially focused on fast-tracking female leaders and has this year expanded to include both men and women.

Coca-Cola Amatil is one of 12 drinks companies involved in the 2019 program, which also including Diageo, Lion Beer, Casella, Campari, Australian Liquor Marketers, Australian Vintage, Brown-Forman, Moet Hennessy, Pernod Ricard and Taylors Wines.

Mr Richardson is one of three Amatil leaders to be mentoring on the 2019 program, alongside Marketing Director Sally Byrne and General Manager of Public Affairs, Communications and Sustainability Nicki Drinkwater. Participating as mentees are Senior Customer Marketing Manager Clare Adamiak and Financial and Operations Controller Gareth Sprainger.

Ms Adamiak joined Amatil from Deloitte in 2018 and agrees that the program’s cross-industry approach adds to its value.  “It’s a truly unique program to provide experiences to work with mentors in other companies,” Ms Adamiak said. “I’m getting practical experience on how to be a better and more inclusive leader, while creating and expanding my network across the industry.

“Amatil and others within the industry understand the need to support their future leaders, and it’s great that they’ve joined forces to create something as valuable as this.”

Coca-Cola Amatil has previously been acknowledged as industry leader for women in management. In the Amatil Australian-based Alcohol & Coffee Business, women hold 41 per cent of all jobs including 41 per cent of sales positions and 31 per cent of management roles.  For more information about the 2019 Drinks Association Inclusive Leadership Program visit the website.