Diversity and equal opportunities

Katrin Weitz: Equal Opportunities Officer & Diversity Manager at ERGO

Magazine, 17.01.2019

Katrin Weitz is keenly interested in her topics: Reconciling of work and family, being a leader in part-time employment and promoting diversity in the company. As the Equal Opportunities Representative and Diversity Manager at ERGO Group, she is not fighting this battle on her own anymore.

Katrin Weitz, Diversity Manager at ERGO

Katrin Weitz, Equal Opportunities Officer and Diversity Manager at ERGO

„Diversity no longer depends on a single person at ERGO – there is no doubt anymore, that diversity and equal opportunities are important issues for the future and the success of the Company,“ says Katrin Weitz. This is a great success, in which she has played a major role. When she became the Equal Opportunities Representative in 2002, she was a lone fighter. „My daughter was born in 1997 and I returned from parental leave after 10 months. Hence, for me combining work and family became an important matter, and I started to promote it more strongly,“ she reflects.

As one of her first actions, she organised holiday care for employees’ children. This was followed by the foundation of the „E-Kids“ daycarecentre in Düsseldorf and a cooperation with the „PME Familienservice“, which has been supporting employees ever since in their search for childcare facilities and daycare centres.

Over the following years, the scope and the focus of her job grew: Katrin Weitz campaigned for ERGO to join the „Charta of Diversity“. She initiated various mentoring programs as well, for example to promote young female managers. As a skilled networker she was able to win many supporters both inside and outside the company.

Integrated diversity management

In 2011, ERGO set up an integrated diversity management system – and since then Katrin Weitz has no longer been fighting alone. ERGO created an integrated, life-phase oriented approach with three important pillars: „creating space“, „promoting development“ and „maintaining health“. For all three pillars, there are numerous of individual initiatives from which both employees and the company benefit.

What Weitz particularly likes about her tasks is that there has never been gridlock, only Progress – people's minds have changed over the years. For example, the willingness of managers to establish guidelines for working from home has risen significantly, high potential women have been promoted actively, and the acceptance of fathers taking parental leave has grown.

Unconscious bias and its effects

There is still plenty to do. Weitz is particularly focused on the topic of „unconscious bias“ - and the question of how these biases affect staffing decisions, for example. Katrin Weitz: „I can really help people with my job. And this is my motivation every day.“

More about this topic: https://www.ergo.com/de/Verantwortung/Mitarbeiter/Diversity

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