STRENGTHENING OUR CULTURE
The creativity and passion of our diverse workforce fuel our company. Our goal is to create a culture where all employees feel they belong, know they are valued and do their best work.
To that end, we are committed to diversity and inclusion throughout the employee lifecycle: during recruitment, in development and advancement, and throughout the employee’s tenure, enhanced by unique programs that promote belonging and enrich our shared values. Inclusion enables us to think entrepreneurially, remain resilient in change, and move quickly to anticipate and create what’s next.
OUR WORKFORCE DEMOGRAPHICS
A diverse employee base that reflects the communities where we live and work is a business imperative. Our workforce demographics show that we've made progress towards greater diversity and we are committed to continuing the work to advance inclusion at all levels of our workforce, particularly among our senior ranks.
We are among the small number of companies with female-majority corporate boards in the Russell 3000 Index, which measures the performance of the 3,000 largest publicly held companies in America. We also have one of the highest percentages of female board members (7 of 12) among S&P 500 Index companies. We are conscious of how we need to mirror these accomplishments across the company.
GLOBAL (US + INT’L)
We also strive for parity in gender representation at the senior leadership levels (vice presidents and above) across our global organization, and we continue to introduce programs and protocols designed to advance this effort. Our board has set an example, so it is important that we must create environments where we enable more women to ascend to senior leadership roles.
We continue to review our pipeline for hiring, promotion, retention and succession planning through a diversity and inclusion lens. Our employee demographics indicate a need for a more intentional focus, particularly at the vice president and other senior levels. We have a rigorous recruiting and succession planning process and we hold leaders accountable for an inclusive environment so that our organization reflects the audiences we serve.
ViacomCBS. Data was collected as of July 31, 2021. Worldwide employees: 21,573; Domestic employees: 15,926. At this time, this analysis was of staff employees only and did not include other classifications such as independent contractors or project-based employees.
Ethnicity is only tracked domestically in the U.S. due to regional variations in the definitions of ethnic diversity.
Senior leadership is defined as those with VP titles and above, which represents 11.5% of the global workforce and 13.8% of the domestic workforce.
A PIPELINE FOR
We have several initiatives to ensure we expand diversity in our intern and employee pipeline. At the recruitment level, we engage diverse talent through partnerships with colleges and universities with inclusive student bodies. We are deepening our relationship with Historically Black Colleges and Universities (HBCUs) with internship opportunities and scholarship programs, including the new ViacomCBS HBCU Diversity in Journalism Scholarship. We continue to work with organizations including the T. Howard Foundation, Prep for Prep, the Emma Bowen Foundation, Management Leadership for Tomorrow (MLT), and the Betsy Magness Leadership Institute which offers development for senior-level women in media, entertainment and technology. We also work with the Academy GOLD talent initiative and have partnerships with more than 65 professional organizations spanning diverse communities, including the Association of Latino Professionals For America (ALPFA), ADCOLOR, Colorcomm and Promax, among others.
ViacomCBS Networks International (VCNI) launched in 2020 its BAME (Black, Asian and minority ethnic) Talent Sponsorship Program to allow junior staff to be mentored by members of the leadership team and, in 2021, followed up with the Female Talent Program, which mentors and promotes women at the director level and above.
We also conduct full searches for open executive positions inclusive of internal and external candidates from underrepresented groups, and we host robust mentorship and sponsorship programs. And recently, we integrated a technology writing platform that provides guidance on content and language to help identify and mitigate biased verbiage from job descriptions and candidate communications.
As DE&I evolves, we want to ensure our colleagues are up to date on the latest resources and next practices. We have robust training that explores and mitigates bias; we invite DE&I professionals to share their expertise with our employees worldwide; and our new PROPEL Learning Experience offers dozens of courses that provide opportunities throughout our ecosystem for every employee to grow, develop new skills and enhance their current ones.
ViacomCBS brands also have created DE&I development programs, such as Culture Code, MTV Entertainment Group’s comprehensive diversity and inclusion orientation that’s available for its staff, talent and production partners. It was developed in partnership with The Museum of Tolerance, Color of Change, CAPE, GLAAD, RAINN, MPAC, NALIP, the Anti-Defamation League, RespectAbility and The Jed Foundation. Inclusivity Councils, which operate within brands, offer training in the DE&I space as well.
LEVERAGING INTERNAL TALENT
ViacomCBS’ Global Inclusion Advisory Committee (GIAC) is a cross-functional, internal council that’s co-chaired by ViacomCBS’ President & CEO Bob Bakish and Global Head of Inclusion Marva Smalls. It’s composed of senior executive leaders and meets quarterly to discuss key DE&I issues and business initiatives.
The Black Leadership Council (BLC) is made up of the most senior Black executives at ViacomCBS. The Council is focused on helping ViacomCBS further its commitment to DE&I through mentorship, sponsorship and helping to pave clear paths toward successful careers for future generations of Black employees.
These councils were created within brands and functional teams to enable them to organize around structured, employee-led working groups to address DEI-related challenges in their businesses.
ViacomCBS Networks International (VCNI) created three task forces to develop cross-division initiatives to address racial equity in every area of the business.
- Programming & Audience, focused on onscreen representation and telling stories that promote racial justice:
- Production & Talent, focused on identifying and empowering creators of color:
- Employee Inclusion, focused on elevating racial equity within the company and ensuring all voices are heard:
The task forces include representation from across VCNI and will solicit feedback from the broader VCNI organization, deliver recommendations to the senior leadership team, and ensure an ongoing organizational commitment to racial equality.
Various third-party organizations have validated our work across the DE&I spectrum. Here are a few examples, and more can be found in our Awards section.
In October 2021, ViacomCBS gained MLT (Management Leadership for Tomorrow) Black Equity at Work Certification Plan Approval, among the first group of companies to achieve this key early milestone on the MLT Black Equity at Work Certification Program journey. The Plan Approval signals our commitment to rigor, accountability, and results with respect to Black equity.
ViacomCBS is a member of The CEO Action for Diversity & Inclusion,™ which aims to rally the business community to advance diversity and inclusion within the workplace.
The Valuable 500 is a global movement driving the inclusion of disability on the business agenda. Maria Kyriacou President of the UK cluster has signed the Valuable 500 Commitment with the following commitments:
- Disability will be tabled at every UK Inclusion board meeting
- We will increase disability representation as part of our ‘No diversity No commission’ program.
- We will create opportunities for employees and talent to share their stories around disability to normalise and promote disability inclusion
- We will deliver disability training to our senior leaders, commissioners and Disability Ambassadors
ViacomCBS has consistently been named to the 100 Best Companies for Working Mothers.
NAN Award (Marva)
UJA Federation Award (George Cheeks)
ViacomCBS offers a range of engagement and development programs, many of them employee-led, that support our diverse employee base and further ingrain inclusion in our culture. Some of these initiatives are housed within brands, and others are across the company. Among the annual company-wide initiatives are Global Inclusion Week and our heritage and cultural celebrations, Black History Month, Women’s History Month, Asian American and Pacific Islander Heritage Month, Pride Month, Hispanic Heritage Month and Spirit Day to name a few.
Sponsored and produced by the Office of Global Inclusion, Inclusion Week is a multi-day event featuring informative, immersive, and interactive sessions that are designed to spark thoughtful dialogue on diversity, equity, inclusion, and belonging. The event began in the UK in 2018 and expanded globally in 2019.
Embodying the spirit of diversity and inclusion, our global Employee Resource Groups (ERGs) provide a forum for employees to flourish personally and professionally while offering direct business support to all our brands. More than 50% of our workforce are members of these employee-led groups.
AMP (Asian American & Pacific Islander Media Professionals) ERG focuses on the AAPI experience through professional and personal development opportunities, cultural activities, networking events, and community projects.
BEAT+ (Black Employees Achieving Together) ERG focuses on advocating for and enhancing the experience of its Black employees. It aims to celebrate a culture of inclusion by cultivating and developing leaders, being a talent incubator and partnering with allies to create a community that showcases ViacomCBS as a workplace of choice that champions diversity.
Fusion ERG champions cultural diversity and representation in the workplace by providing a diverse lens for employees and business divisions through cultural events, safe spaces, and community projects.
ParentHood ERG provides a flexible support network, open dialogue, practical tools and resources, and educational events to empower parents and caregivers in creating a healthy work-life experience while amplifying their professional excellence.
Proud ERG enriches the professional and personal development of LGBTQ+ employees and allies, champions community, key causes and an inclusive culture, all while serving as an LGBTQ+ resource for the company.
Rise ERG creates an inclusive global community that activates, connects, and develops early-to-mid career employees and allies.
Somos ERG promotes belonging through community engagement, leadership development and organizational initiatives to increase the representation of Latinx and Hispanic employees.
Women+ ERG is a community rooted in mentorship, education, programming and philanthropic endeavors, and provides the steppingstones to achieve higher personal and professional business goals for women and allies.
VIACOMCBS VETERANS NETWORK
The ViacomCBS Veterans Network offers veteran, National Guard, and Reserve employees a forum for connecting, networking, and personal and professional development. It also provides a much-needed community and support for veterans and their family members. The ViacomCBS Veterans Network ensures that we never forget our obligation to the more than 20 million living veterans in the United States, especially the nearly 2.6 million who served after the events of Sept. 11, 2001.
Our environmental, social, and governance (ESG) strategy is critical to our success as a company. We are working to foster a better world for our employees, audiences, partners, and communities. It is our responsibility to measure and manage the ESG impacts we have as a global content powerhouse.