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VMLY&R Unveils New Inclusion Experience Practice

Advertising Agency
Kansas City, USA
Specialty practice aims to create change through cultural awareness and racial equity within companies

VMLY&R has announced today the launch of its Inclusion Experience Practice, a strategic consultancy partner that works with clients to bring about sustainable cultural change within organizations. The new offering serves as a critical step toward creating connected brands and companies that are culturally sensitive, diverse, equitable, and inclusive. The practice will be led by Chief Integration Officer Myron King.

With a focus on proactive collaboration with client partners, VMLY&R’s Inclusion Experience Practice aims to generate amplified cultural awareness and racial equity within all brands and organizations.

These changes are designed to create greater impact and engagement with consumers, drive business growth, and ultimately generate positive impact across industries and communities.

Experts agree diversifying and empowering marketing teams and creating experiences authentic to their audiences are positive business drivers. According to Forrester’s latest report, “The Business of Belonging,” investing in employee equity is proven to drive brand value: “Diverse talent and a values-driven culture will drive stronger bonds with customers and employees and will spark market-leading innovation.” S&P 500 companies that invested in diversity initiatives generated a higher operating profit margin (12%) than those that did not (8%) (Source: Wall Street Journal, 2019).

VMLY&R is already engaging with over 20 clients across its Inclusion Experience Practice in key transformation areas:

o Workplace Inclusivity and Belonging

o Employee Engagement Design and Activation

o Organizational Design and Process Enhancement

o Culturally Adept Content, Strategy and Execution

“We have heard from many organizations across the board who have voiced commitments to diversity inclusion, said King, VMLY&R chief integration officer. “A critical component of our Inclusion Experience Practice focuses on how we proactively collaborate with and lead our clients by amplifying cultural awareness and relevance in order to create stronger work and drive sustainable business.”

The agency’s Inclusion Experience Practice is composed of three core capability areas:

1. Transformation: An organizational-focus design and process enhancement. Procedural, organizational and transformational change consulting for client partners.

2. Diversity, Equity and Inclusion: An employee-focus with programming, talent and building diverse teams. This includes internal consulting with teams, creative consultation and utilizing employee resource groups’ specialty areas.

3. Culture Studio: A brand-strategy focus. As one of six strategic studios at VMLY&R, Culture Studio specializes in helping brands navigate culture fluency and identify new market opportunities.

“As we’ve witnessed, inclusion is vitally important when we look at the cultural movements affecting brands and people,” said Jon Cook, global CEO of VMLY&R. “Understanding and navigating our changing social climate is not only a competitive advantage, it’s essential to cementing future relevance. We’re thrilled to be among the first global agencies to offer a fully integrated inclusion-centered offering that drives sustainable business value for clients.”

VMLY&R’s Inclusion Experience Practice expects to expand to the UK in Q3, 2021. VMLY&R has undertaken its own DE&I transformation efforts since summer 2020. The agency’s Transformation Board is led by executive leaders from across the agency’s North American offices and consists of more than 50 team members from across major capability areas. Supported by strong business momentum across its North America market in 2020, VMLY&R has added more than 400 new full-time employees to its staff, with over a third of new hires identifying as BIPOC.