You can thank Williams-Fauntroy for the carriage agreement with Hulu that Discovery landed in September 2018, bringing Discovery Channel, TLC, ID, MotorTrend and Animal Planet to the streamer. She also specifically supports TLC, and is the co-lead on in-house production and deal counsel on the net’s “90 Day Fiancé” series and spinoffs. The exec keeps busy serving as a national board member of NAMIC, and is also co-chair and executive sponsor of Discovery’s Black Cultural Alliance, one of the company’s employee resource groups dedicated to diversity and inclusion in the workplace. “These organizations within our company give employees a chance to connect around shared experiences and give the company the opportunity to be educated and enlightened about the many diverse populations in our corporate culture,” she says.
What does your company/organization do to ensure all employees feel included?
Discovery does two things really well: (1) Discovery does a great job of communicating and celebrating our many global ventures and (2) Discovery has workplace benefits that address myriad needs to make our lives easier. We have a companywide digital workplace with news and information, fun corporate employee challenges (and invitations to Shark Week parties – who wants to miss that?). These efforts help every employee stay connected to our businesses. We also have workplace “amenities” such as onsite health care, employee health and wellness programs and corporate partner discounts. These efforts allow employees to invest in taking care of themselves.
How can diversity be better incorporated into the recruiting process?
We must be purposeful and proactive if we want to increase our diverse employee base. It is critical for each of us to widen our circle for recruiting and make targeted efforts to interview and hire more diverse candidates. Partnerships with industry organizations such as NAMIC and the Emma Bowen Foundation, as well as connections with HBCUs (Historically Black Colleges and Universities) and affinity groups within majority universities can create excellent pipelines for talented candidates. Additionally, robust internship programs are wonderful entry points for diverse candidates – but we have to make sure that managers and companies are making efforts to let diverse students and applicants know about the programs.
Can you share a successful diversity program at your company or one you’ve observed at another company or organization?
I love and am so proud of our Discovery Employee Resource Groups (ERGs). For years we have supported and engaged employees as they participate in a variety of affinity groups such as the Discovery Women’s Network, the Black Cultural Alliance, the Discovery Veterans Association and Discovery Pride (to name a few!). I have happily been an active member and executive sponsor of the Black Cultural Alliance. These organizations within our company give employees a chance to connect around shared experiences and give the company the opportunity to be educated and enlightened about the many diverse populations in our corporate culture. By empowering and acknowledging these affinity groups, Discovery embraces the celebration of heritage and community, and ultimately the entire company benefits.