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Agency Life

We Are #HavasProud

We Are #HavasProud

Danielle Smith

Danielle Smith

July 23, 2019

This is how Havas Villages worldwide celebrated pride month

On June 28, 1969, the Stonewall Riots in New York City marked a turning point in the Gay Rights movement. The six-day rebellion is recognized as the beginning of an organized movement fighting for legalization and representation of the queer community in the United States. The City of New York hosted this year’s World Pride, the largest Pride celebration in the world. Last month, Havas Villages around the world celebrated Pride Month with activations, performances, competitions, panels, events, fundraising and community gatherings with a focus on learning and celebrating Pride. Below you’ll see how some of our agencies are #HavasProud.

 

New York

Havas NY celebrated Pride with a weeklong initiative including an ally training, an open round table discussion centered on diversity in the workplace, and an office-wide happy hour that helped raise funds for the Ali Forney Center, a nonprofit dedicated to empowering LGBTQ+ homeless youth. 

 

About three years ago, Havas Creative Art Director Eduardo Camacho helped create an internal LGBTQ+ employee resource group, Havas Proud, with the mission to celebrate and connect the LGBTQ+ people of Havas by coming together as a community and raising awareness around issues that impact the daily lives of queer people. “For Pride this year,” Camacho said, “it became clear that the role of being an active and responsible ally was something something that needed to be openly discussed.

 

We prioritized discussion and education this year by providing and facilitating open spaces for learning,” he said. “We came to the realization that we could be a resource for others who may not have the education or language tools to properly convey their questions or support. We felt it was important to provide this in a workplace setting because it could have a real-world impact on a person’s perspective or future interaction with someone.”

 

He added: “In 2019, advocacy means making an impact and moving beyond a simple celebration. In order to truly connect with the community and show genuine support as marketers, we need to prioritize representation and inclusion from all fronts.” 

Spain

Havas Media Group Spain’s Head of HR Iberia Enrique Escalante was excited to help organize the agency’s first year celebrating Pride at a local level. Highlights included changing the Havas sign outside the building to reflect the rainbow Pride colors and an event where employees wore solid colored shirts—each a different color of the rainbow.

 

“We received feedback from our employees of how important it is to promote these kinds of events as part of our ‘better together’ strategy,” said Escalante. “We increased internal communication related to Pride in order to share the planned events and involve all the employees in the event.

 

The Madrid and Barcelona villages plan to hold bias training at the end of 2019,” Escalante said. “Inclusion plays a role in our objective of being and having meaningful people. We create teams with different perspectives and backgrounds to help us to make a meaningful connection with our clients and each other.”

 

Chicago

Havas Chicago celebrated Pride with a tribute to the 50th anniversary of the Stonewall Riots. The agency transformed the lobby into an art installation that showcased the story of the riots and what led to them, recreating the Stonewall Inn and the protest posters that resulted in the first Pride march one year later.  

 

The agency aimed to bring to light the fact that, with as much progress that’s been made in advancing LGBTQ+ rights over the last 50 years, the messages on those posters are still needing to be heard today. As an extension of the lobby installation, on June 28, 2019, the agency led a commemorative march through downtown Chicago and also hosted educational and cultural events including speaker Pidgeon Pagonis, an intersex American activist, writer, and artist.

  

“Rather than focus solely on glitter and rainbows, we set out to educate about the events that occurred back then, and how the same issues are still relevant today,” said Anders Da Silva, a Creative Director at Havas Chicago.

Colombia

In March 2019 the agency launched its diversity policy with the purpose of establishing equal opportunity for all people from the moment they begin working for and with Havas.

 

“For years, we’ve done an amazing job because we’ve done it together. And in that process, we’ve discovered that our differences are the essence of our experience. That’s what makes us proud,” said Communications Specialist Ángela Hernández Toledo.

 

On the day the agency launched its Proud of Diversity initiative, it invited everyone from the CEO to the cleaning staff to interns to send pictures of their team members with captions explaining how they differ and what they have in common.

 

“We are proud of all of our differences, and the fact that we can work together knowing and accepting our differences,” said Toledo. 

London

One of the first things visitors to the Havas London Kings Cross offices saw last month were the elevators decorated with a show-stopping images featuring six LGBTQ+ heroes, curated carefully to represent diversity. In addition, the agency had a series of coming out stories displayed in the cafeteria, which gave a flavor of the many ways in which the experience of coming out can be realized.

 

“I’m a big believer that stories are a great learning tool, so taking inspiration from Brandon Stanton’s Humans of NY we produced an exhibition called Havas Stories—inviting our Havas colleagues to share their coming out experiences. These stories played a massive part in our Pride celebrations as we felt it is important for people to be able to understand and ultimately celebrate with their colleagues. Our stories are a part of who we are and by sharing some of our truths it makes for richer connections and an ability to have insight into the lives of people different from ourselves,” said Bukola Garry, the agency’s Diversity & Inclusion Manager.

 

The agency ran a film evening to show Pride, a film about London-based gay and lesbian activists lending their support to striking miners in 1984 Wales, held a panel event featuring four panelists discussing how the LGBTQ+ narrative has changed since the Stonewall Riots, and a Pride bar night with rainbow cocktails and karaoke in the cafeteria.

 

The events were organized by Havas Pride, a committee that began three years ago and is the only cross-agency employee-led initiative in the London office.

 

“We are so proud of the conversations we’ve started for people in the lift and hope we’ve made Havas an even more inclusive place to work. Despite such a big change in the last 10 years in the UK, we are still very far from equality. Pride month presents a fantastic platform on which we can celebrate how far we’ve come and remind us of the deep inequalities still at play,” said Greg Dagul, account director at Havas International.

Brazil

In celebration of Pride Month, BETC/Havas first created a Diversity Committee—whose mission is to promote activities and discussions around the theme, not only about gender diversity or sexual orientation, but also to discuss and ensure diversity across all categories so that its work and policies always reflect the agency’s position.

 

The second initiative was the organization of a breakfast talk for all the employees with an LGBTQ+ activist.

 

BETC/Havas New Business & Communications Director Camila Nakagawa says talking about increased diversity is often the first step in creating change to make the environment more humanized and promote respect among people. 

 

“The idea is that people feel happier with where they work and respect is present in the workplace and throughout people’s lives,” Nakagawa said. “Turning our eyes to the larger advertising market, we expect significant changes in the way companies and people see the issue. In addition, we expect that more policies of diversity and inclusion will be adopted, and that we will continue to find clients with the courage to represent the views of the LGBTQ+ community.”

Perú

Havas Perú celebrated Pride from head to toe, literally, by giving everyone in the agency—over 350+ people—rainbow shoelaces. The message on the laces read: “Empathy is always putting yourself in someone else’s shoes #HavasPride.”

 

Havas Perú CCO Andrés Briceño says while Better Together is a great mission, it can only be achieved if you understand that empathy is a strong part of being human-centered.  

 

“We always preach about meaningful brands, sell it to our clients, talk about it in meetings and in the media. It’s fundamental to practice what we preach, to act on what we believe,” said Briceño. “When it comes to LGBTQ representation in the office, I hope that people eventually don’t see the differences, don’t ask about someone’s sexuality, and ultimately we see the best professionals in charge, regardless of their gender or sexual orientation.”  

On June 28, 1969, the Stonewall Riots in New York City marked a turning point in the Gay Rights movement. The six-day rebellion is recognized as the beginning of an organized movement fighting for legalization and representation of the queer community in the United States. The City of New York hosted this year’s World Pride, the largest Pride celebration in the world. Last month, Havas Villages around the world celebrated Pride Month with activations, performances, competitions, panels, events, fundraising and community gatherings with a focus on learning and celebrating Pride. Below you’ll see how some of our agencies are #HavasProud.

 

New York

Havas NY celebrated Pride with a weeklong initiative including an ally training, an open round table discussion centered on diversity in the workplace, and an office-wide happy hour that helped raise funds for the Ali Forney Center, a nonprofit dedicated to empowering LGBTQ+ homeless youth. 

 

About three years ago, Havas Creative Art Director Eduardo Camacho helped create an internal LGBTQ+ employee resource group, Havas Proud, with the mission to celebrate and connect the LGBTQ+ people of Havas by coming together as a community and raising awareness around issues that impact the daily lives of queer people. “For Pride this year,” Camacho said, “it became clear that the role of being an active and responsible ally was something something that needed to be openly discussed.

 

We prioritized discussion and education this year by providing and facilitating open spaces for learning,” he said. “We came to the realization that we could be a resource for others who may not have the education or language tools to properly convey their questions or support. We felt it was important to provide this in a workplace setting because it could have a real-world impact on a person’s perspective or future interaction with someone.”

 

He added: “In 2019, advocacy means making an impact and moving beyond a simple celebration. In order to truly connect with the community and show genuine support as marketers, we need to prioritize representation and inclusion from all fronts.” 

Spain

Havas Media Group Spain’s Head of HR Iberia Enrique Escalante was excited to help organize the agency’s first year celebrating Pride at a local level. Highlights included changing the Havas sign outside the building to reflect the rainbow Pride colors and an event where employees wore solid colored shirts—each a different color of the rainbow.

 

“We received feedback from our employees of how important it is to promote these kinds of events as part of our ‘better together’ strategy,” said Escalante. “We increased internal communication related to Pride in order to share the planned events and involve all the employees in the event.

 

The Madrid and Barcelona villages plan to hold bias training at the end of 2019,” Escalante said. “Inclusion plays a role in our objective of being and having meaningful people. We create teams with different perspectives and backgrounds to help us to make a meaningful connection with our clients and each other.”

 

Chicago

Havas Chicago celebrated Pride with a tribute to the 50th anniversary of the Stonewall Riots. The agency transformed the lobby into an art installation that showcased the story of the riots and what led to them, recreating the Stonewall Inn and the protest posters that resulted in the first Pride march one year later.  

 

The agency aimed to bring to light the fact that, with as much progress that’s been made in advancing LGBTQ+ rights over the last 50 years, the messages on those posters are still needing to be heard today. As an extension of the lobby installation, on June 28, 2019, the agency led a commemorative march through downtown Chicago and also hosted educational and cultural events including speaker Pidgeon Pagonis, an intersex American activist, writer, and artist.

  

“Rather than focus solely on glitter and rainbows, we set out to educate about the events that occurred back then, and how the same issues are still relevant today,” said Anders Da Silva, a Creative Director at Havas Chicago.

Colombia

In March 2019 the agency launched its diversity policy with the purpose of establishing equal opportunity for all people from the moment they begin working for and with Havas.

 

“For years, we’ve done an amazing job because we’ve done it together. And in that process, we’ve discovered that our differences are the essence of our experience. That’s what makes us proud,” said Communications Specialist Ángela Hernández Toledo.

 

On the day the agency launched its Proud of Diversity initiative, it invited everyone from the CEO to the cleaning staff to interns to send pictures of their team members with captions explaining how they differ and what they have in common.

 

“We are proud of all of our differences, and the fact that we can work together knowing and accepting our differences,” said Toledo. 

London

One of the first things visitors to the Havas London Kings Cross offices saw last month were the elevators decorated with a show-stopping images featuring six LGBTQ+ heroes, curated carefully to represent diversity. In addition, the agency had a series of coming out stories displayed in the cafeteria, which gave a flavor of the many ways in which the experience of coming out can be realized.

 

“I’m a big believer that stories are a great learning tool, so taking inspiration from Brandon Stanton’s Humans of NY we produced an exhibition called Havas Stories—inviting our Havas colleagues to share their coming out experiences. These stories played a massive part in our Pride celebrations as we felt it is important for people to be able to understand and ultimately celebrate with their colleagues. Our stories are a part of who we are and by sharing some of our truths it makes for richer connections and an ability to have insight into the lives of people different from ourselves,” said Bukola Garry, the agency’s Diversity & Inclusion Manager.

 

The agency ran a film evening to show Pride, a film about London-based gay and lesbian activists lending their support to striking miners in 1984 Wales, held a panel event featuring four panelists discussing how the LGBTQ+ narrative has changed since the Stonewall Riots, and a Pride bar night with rainbow cocktails and karaoke in the cafeteria.

 

The events were organized by Havas Pride, a committee that began three years ago and is the only cross-agency employee-led initiative in the London office.

 

“We are so proud of the conversations we’ve started for people in the lift and hope we’ve made Havas an even more inclusive place to work. Despite such a big change in the last 10 years in the UK, we are still very far from equality. Pride month presents a fantastic platform on which we can celebrate how far we’ve come and remind us of the deep inequalities still at play,” said Greg Dagul, account director at Havas International.

Brazil

In celebration of Pride Month, BETC/Havas first created a Diversity Committee—whose mission is to promote activities and discussions around the theme, not only about gender diversity or sexual orientation, but also to discuss and ensure diversity across all categories so that its work and policies always reflect the agency’s position.

 

The second initiative was the organization of a breakfast talk for all the employees with an LGBTQ+ activist.

 

BETC/Havas New Business & Communications Director Camila Nakagawa says talking about increased diversity is often the first step in creating change to make the environment more humanized and promote respect among people. 

 

“The idea is that people feel happier with where they work and respect is present in the workplace and throughout people’s lives,” Nakagawa said. “Turning our eyes to the larger advertising market, we expect significant changes in the way companies and people see the issue. In addition, we expect that more policies of diversity and inclusion will be adopted, and that we will continue to find clients with the courage to represent the views of the LGBTQ+ community.”

Perú

Havas Perú celebrated Pride from head to toe, literally, by giving everyone in the agency—over 350+ people—rainbow shoelaces. The message on the laces read: “Empathy is always putting yourself in someone else’s shoes #HavasPride.”

 

Havas Perú CCO Andrés Briceño says while Better Together is a great mission, it can only be achieved if you understand that empathy is a strong part of being human-centered.  

 

“We always preach about meaningful brands, sell it to our clients, talk about it in meetings and in the media. It’s fundamental to practice what we preach, to act on what we believe,” said Briceño. “When it comes to LGBTQ representation in the office, I hope that people eventually don’t see the differences, don’t ask about someone’s sexuality, and ultimately we see the best professionals in charge, regardless of their gender or sexual orientation.”  

Danielle Smith is the Communications Manager of Havas Group. She’s believes every meal can be tacos if you have tortillas and the heart to try.

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