Cisco is an innovation business. And innovation only comes about when diverse views are not only available, but visible and heard within the business and when employees feel included and that they can contribute to that core purpose.
However, despite an extensive Inclusion and Diversity agenda, Cisco felt that they hadn’t fully harnessed the potential of their people and asked blue goose how they could demonstrate that I&D is a strategic business imperative that is relevant and beneficial to everybody.
Think first, design later
Our starting point was qualitative research to gain key insights into employee and stakeholder perceptions. The result was a fresh perspective on the challenge and from that we developed a communication strategy based upon real insight into both the barriers and drivers of engagement with a largely male audience. That strategy was to shift the focus away from what Inclusion and Diversity is, to the outcomes it delivers; a shift away from the tolerance and sensitivity messages about what not to do, but a positive message about what to do.
Aligned to business strategy
We then developed More Together as the creative platform to spearhead what would become a radical change in thinking and communicating. More Together liberated the concepts of inclusion and diversity – which were in danger of becoming siloed – and demonstrate that their value lies broadly and horizontally across the business. It put I&D firmly in the context of the Cisco business strategy and clarified its potential for positive impact on employees’ day-to-day work.
A multi-phase integrated communication plan was developed and implemented that engaged employees on their terms, and in ways that tangibly supported their roles and responsibilities.
The campaign’s success at driving inclusive behaviour supported Cisco in winning the prestigious Opportunity Now Inclusive Culture Award, an award that recognises significant change at an organisational cultural level.