February is Black History Month, a time to celebrate the achievements and influence of Black Americans on our country’s history, but also to recognize the work that still needs to be done to achieve greater diversity, equity, inclusion and justice for people of color.
As February (and Black History Month 2022) wraps up, we hope to inspire you with 7 examples of employers celebrating Black History Month in ways that are authentic, not self-centered and that contribute something helpful to the community.
1. Freddie Mac: Highlighting employee resource groups
Freddie Mac dedicated an Instagram post to their ARISE (African Diaspora, Resources and Information Sharing for Everyone) business resource group. The post included a quote from the company’s CFO both celebrating the group and explaining its purpose, saying:
“The ARISE BRG is a safe space where our Black colleagues, along with allies, collaborate to create a culture where everyone is celebrated, seen, and able to learn from one another during Black History Month and beyond.”
This kind of post hits a number of bases, as it points attention towards the group itself and the achievements of its members but also sets the stage for the kind of support and resources available to new hires who join Freddie Mac.
2. Meta: Recognizing employee influence
For Black History Month, Meta, formerly Facebook, highlighted one of the key contributors behind their new AR and VR platform, Gabe Gault, who built a virtual Black History museum experience set in 1960s Memphis for the company.
As the first resident artist for the Metaverse Culture Series, Gabe’s story was the perfect center point for Meta’s post celebrating Black History Month. It focuses primarily on Gabe’s personal achievements as an artist and his pivotal contribution to the company’s future, making it perfect for other aspiring artists trying to break into the industry.
3. Blue Cross Blue Shield of Michigan: Highlighting industry-specific pioneers
Blue Cross Blue Shield of MI celebrated past local heroes in their social posts. Specifically, their post celebrating Ralph Johnson Bunche, a Detroit native born in 1904 who graduated with a Ph.D. from Harvard, was involved in the formation and administration of the United Nations and won both a Nobel Peace Prize and Presidential Medal of Freedom.
Celebrating influential figures throughout history, especially local ones, is a great way to show support and prove to people in your community what’s possible without coming across as preachy or self-aggrandizing.
4. Mongo DB: Sharing employee stories
MongoDB happened to publish a blog post by Marcus Eagen, Staff Product Manager during the month of February. We say “happened” because the story wasn’t specifically tied to the celebration of Black History Month, but that’s exactly why it’s the perfect piece of content to share — it’s not a one-off celebratory post but yet another addition to a long line of diverse stories the company has published over the years.
This depiction of the breadth of voices at the company comes across to candidates, and is indicative of the kind of everyday diversity and inclusion they can expect in joining the MongoDB culture.
Rally note: Register for our webinar, Employee Generated Content that Attracts Top Talent, to learn how to build an EGC strategy like MongoDB’s at your own organization.
5. CSL Behring: Addressing challenges in the community — and offering possible solutions
Instead of tying Black History Month back to their company, CSL Behring used their platform to bring attention to medical challenges specific to people of color, who often face extra barriers to care when dealing with rare diseases.
This is a great example of a company using its reach and authority during Black History Month to start a conversation about and offer potential solutions to challenges important to the community.
6. CallRail: Showing industry-specific career paths
How does someone like me get that job? It’s one of the most common questions candidates have, especially Gen Z talent, and one that CallRail answered for aspiring software engineers in the black community as part of their celebration of Black History Month.
Even more helpful is that the person featured, Alex Mitchell, didn’t have a traditional path to becoming a software engineer. Only after switching his major from film to computer science and using free resources like YouTube did he end up in his current position. For people in similar positions, this content is proof that changes can be made, paths can be diverted and employers like CallRail are waiting at the finish line to hire them.
7. Gym Shark: Honoring heroes in the community
Gym Shark shared multiple videos of heroes, mentors and business owners in the black community reacting to footage of people whose lives they’d positively affected.
Not only did this approach help promote the community figures and their businesses, but it also played to Gym Shark’s brand of being a company that supports and develops its employees, customers and partners.
If your organization celebrated Black History Month this year, get in touch to let us know how! And keep the important work going by Creating an Impactful DEI Strategy at your Organization.