It’s no secret that the corporate structures in our nation, particularly in the Architecture Engineering and Construction (AEC) industry, lack diversity. At Mead & Hunt, we understand the harm this has on our country, our communities, and our firm. All roles, including leadership and management, should be shared by all who are capable. Diversity does not mean simply checking the box for affirmative action. Instead, we will actively seek out individuals with diverse backgrounds because we know it enhances our collaborative capabilities. We will strive to show honest and true diversity in all roles, at all levels, and to offer equal opportunities to people of all backgrounds.
Employee Resource Group (ERG) is born
In 2018, Mead & Hunt created the ERG to explore and invest in diversity and inclusion. The ERG actively looks for ways Mead & Hunt can be more inclusive, providing representation and accommodation for members of the military, women, the disabled, minorities, and LGBTQ+ employees. The death of George Floyd and the subsequent focus on racial and civil injustices has highlighted the true urgency of this work. We must work toward true diversity, inclusion and belonging to alleviate systemic racial inequities within our corporate structure and the AEC industry.
So what are we doing?
This is not an isolated problem; we must start by working on ourselves. We are evaluating each of our practices to put diversity and inclusion first. Our markets have already embedded principles of social sustainability in their framework; we will challenge ourselves to look at future endeavors through the lens of racial justice. We understand we are accountable for all people impacted by our work. We will invest our human and financial resources to advance people in the communities we serve. We will operate under a system of accountability at all levels and pursue innovative ways to positively influence societal growth.
In addition, we will actively listen to and support our employees, clients, and communities. We will actively support those who need immediate assistance. We will identify and prioritize needs through direct, meaningful dialogue. We will measure our success through our ability to enact change. We will accomplish this through:
- Improved targeted recruitment of underrepresented groups at colleges and universities
- Opportunities for Black, Indigenous, and People of Color (BIPOC) employees for advancement and promotion into leadership and management roles
- Continued discussions within each discipline to assess and evolve diversity and inclusion efforts
- Promoting involvement in diverse communities to reach youth interested in our fields
- Educational opportunities on diversity and inclusion for employees, leaders, and managers
- Working with managers to create accountability plans for diversity, inclusion, and belonging in their groups
Black lives matter.
Racism is a human rights issue. We recognize that our differences hold tremendous value, and all human life has inherent and equal value. Right now, based on the actions of those who hold power and the systemic inequities that have never been mitigated, Black lives are not treated equally. Saying “All lives matter” ignores this reality. At Mead & Hunt, we will strive to better ourselves, our markets, our industry, and our communities. We will hold steadfast to our values to do what’s right; do what makes sense; and take care of each other. We understand that all lives cannot matter until Black lives matter.