Organizational development maven Winley joined A+E in 2013 and has made his mark by creating and executing strategies to identify opportunities for enhanced cross-functional integration among the company’s brands. Winley, who says his personal election campaign slogan would be “United we stand. Divided we fall,” also serves a growing role in executive coaching and leading talent development programs for A+E. He gives the cable industry a grade of B- on diversity, noting under-representation of women of color in executive roles, and for all execs of color in the C suite. “The runway is simply longer for professionals of color before their careers take flight… Therefore senior managers of color need to add an extra dose of resilience to their toolbox,” he says.
What grade do you give the cable industry on diversity and why?
B-. On the positive side, I believe that people of color comprise approximately 15 percent of senior and executive level positions in the cable industry, a percentage that I believe is slightly higher than for corporate America as a whole, so that’s pretty good. However, when you drill deeper there is still significant under-representation of women of color in executive roles and the overall promotion rate to C-suite level positions for white executives happens at substantially faster rates than for executives of color. Therefore, senior managers of color need to add an extra dose of resilience to their toolbox. These facts suggest that the runway is simply longer for professionals of color before their careers take flight. The other significant data point is the turnover rate of senior leaders of color, which can often be as much as 50 percent higher than it is for their white counterparts. So I would say overall, our industry has done a pretty good job to date and I’m very optimistic that we will continue to see the business benefits of having a diversity of experiences and perspectives in our executive ranks reflect the rich tapestry of our consumer base.
What are the television show/s – cable or broadcast – best embrace diversity?
I think the television shows that best reflect diversity right now beyond Election News coverage are “Transparent,” “Grey’s Anatomy,” “Orange Is the New Black” and “The Walking Dead.” From my perspective, on-air diversity is broader than highlighting one culture or one gender or even a particular slice of a culture. The two essential attributes I look for are good storytelling and authenticity. Does the show reflect the many dimensions of our culture by highlighting a diversity of characters, ideas and opinions?
My personal election campaign slogan would be…
I’m a political junkie and a big sports fan and believe that the principle that holds true for our nation and for any winning sports franchise also rings true for winning businesses. My slogan would be: United We Stand. Divided We Fall.