Vopak Mexico first to implement program on Diversity and Inclusion
Friday 23 October 2020 marked the festive conclusion of a pilot program for Diversity and Inclusion of Vopak Mexico. Vopak Mexico is the first Vopak organization to implement a special program aimed to increase and promote diversity and inclusion in their environment, and thereby a pioneer and example for Vopak worldwide.
The virtual event was presided by Managing Director Mexico Cristhian Pérez and Human Resources and Communications Director Luis Palacios, and kicked off with a message from Chris Robblee, President of Vopak Americas. Special invitee was Holland House Mexico Manager Carin Verbree, initiator of the HHM Committee Human Resources, Diversity & Inclusion.
The competitive advantages created through inclusive and diversified human resources practices have long since been proven. Vopak´s pilot program on diversity and inclusion is aimed at creating a change of mindset among a small yet representative group of employees, who become “ambassadors of change” within their own teams, thereby creating a wave of change throughout all levels of the organization. Thirty-five employees were chosen for this significant task. Vopak´s approach explains the basic concepts of diversity and inclusion, but also give its employees an understanding of the importance of inclusive practices in the organization. Graduates are provided with tools and techniques to mitigate change and become a more diverse and inclusive organization. So far, Vopak Mexico managed to sensitize almost 80 percent of their employees on the importance of diverse and inclusive organizations, both inside and outside the workplace.
Jose Guzman, one of the pilot´s graduates, stated, “In the beginning no one was really sure what this program was for, however it turned out to be really fun and we quickly realized that the principles we were taught are applicable in all layers of our lives, both at work and at home. It is a journey every graduate is undertaking individually”. Luis Palacios praised the enthusiasm and passion the graduates demonstrate and concluded that Vopak Mexico has taken a considerable step towards embracing diversity and inclusion into the company’s culture.
Concluding the event, Cristhian Pérez thanked all participants for their hard work and dedication. He reminded the graduates once again that the event marks a beginning, rather than an end. Many more steps still need to be taken in our organizations and society when it comes to diversity and inclusion.
An initiative aspiring to contribute to change into more diverse and inclusive practices is the HHM committee for Human Resources, Inclusion and Diversity, of which Vopak Mexico is an active member. President Veronica Pantoja Jiménez, HR Director at Leaseplan, explains that the HHM committee seeks to be a communication agent and promoter of change in the local and global community. Apart from the exchange of best practices and learnings between its members, the committee aims to create strategic connections between private and public associations that create impact and support vulnerable groups. On a more personal note, the president adds that the committee shares the belief that people are not alone in this world and that it is therefore everyone’s duty to contribute towards creating an active, inclusive and diverse community. A community where vulnerable groups are not only being included but also supported, creating equal access to opportunities.