BAWI will support education, training, and knowledge dissemination to accelerate the advancement of women leaders, break down gender barriers, and promote gender equity at Braskem. BAWIs objective will be achieved with several initiatives, including engaging participants in networking and a mentoring program, independent of area or role. This program will include both female and male mentors. They will also provide access to advanced business education, be a platform for providing opportunities to the development of women at Braskem, and provide support to the organization to promote gender equity. Lastly, they will influence future practices that enable Braskem to adapt to changes in the workplace.
BAWI will be conducting a road show in September 2015 to all Braskem sites in order to introduce the initiative to its Team Members. BAWI has started the initial plans for the formal kick off at all sites in the fall. BAWI is also partnering with Ellevate, a global network of 30,000 women in 82 countries, connecting members with other professional women and providing in-person events, Jam Sessions (twice-weekly webinars), articles, blogs, and videos. BAWI will also engage in networking opportunities at upcoming womens conferences, including the 12th Annual Pennsylvania Conference for Women being held at the Philadelphia Convention Center, and the 16th Annual Texas Conference for Women sponsored by Exxon and Phillips 66.
BAWI is encouraging all female team members to become an Ellevate member. Ellevate is committed to providing the tools and resources that members want and need to continue growing professionally. This includes opportunities to connect online and through in-person networking events, learn through BAWIs on-demand educational webinars, and invest their time and their expertise in their personal career success as well as the success of other women.
Ellevate will be a convener for Braskem women, providing opportunities for education, networking, business development, and PR around Investing In Women. Ellevate offers the highest quality network and programming for professional women, as well as an external source for research, targeted content, and knowledge around best practices.
BAWI will also develop a mentoring program and an internal platform of discussions. This will create awareness on the gender gap topic not only with Braskem leadership, but all team members. It will also support women to increase industry knowledge and exposure to different organizations within Braskem, as well as build an internal networking structure for female employees. The platform of discussions targets all Braskem America team members.
BAWIs Commitment will begin with holding events centered on the three focus areas. The kickoff week will begin in September 2015 with the introduction of Braskem Americas Women Initiative. They will then start Mentor/Mentee Program Overview, followed by a preview of Future Events, the Mentor/Mentee Program Overview, and the BAWI Website. They will then introduce Motivational Speakers, with focus on jump starting career, identifying gender biases, and goal attainment. Next, BAWI will identify outside their networking event, followed by holding a post-work internal happy hour. They will then review the culmination of the week activities, as well as first impression discussions, feedback, etc.
BAWIs Commitment includes a monthly schedule, including one monthly Braskem scheduled event. This may include a speaking, roundtable, discussion, training, or networking opportunity. There will be one virtual or external event opportunity monthly. This may just be the identification of an outside event that is open to anyone in the community. BAWI will offer mentee/mentor meetings scheduled at their convenience, but is recommended to occur once per month. BAWI will also provide additional events as necessary. The monthly schedule will also include utilizing BAWIs networking relationship with Ellevate to provide ongoing opportunities based on specific team member needs.
Keeping everyone engaged will be an ongoing process. BAWIs agenda of activities will be adjusted according to site specific needs. BAWI will create a distribution list for all women interested in receiving emails about the initiative. Likewise, upcoming events, outside opportunities, reminders, and surveys will be sent out in email format. BAWI will create a BAWI SharePoint Website, where all resources will be shared and located in one space. Also, the events calendar will be kept updated, and Braskem will offer feedback and discussion forums. They will also offer recaps of previous events, as well as webinars.
Braskem will offer improved transparency in programs and seminars that are offered to Braskem team members. They will include communication efforts surrounding off-site trainings and development, six sigma certification, and growth opportunities. This will work in conjunction with HR efforts.
The Braskem America Women Initiative (BAWI) began with a group of women who wanted to increase and encourage the promotion of high achieving females within the organization. The team started by analyzing Braskems male/female workforce ratio, concluding that Braskem America was 81 percent male and 19 percent female. Of that 19 percent, very few women were in leadership positions within the company.
Although Braskem America is considered a progressive and entrepreneurial place to work and gender discrimination is not tolerated within the organization, there are currently zero females in VP positions, zero on the business committee, and out of 128 leaders at Braskem America, only 22 are women.
BAWI has been focused on understanding the reasons behind this gender gap and on creating awareness of why it exists. They have been actively discussing the reasons for this disparity, building knowledge on the topic, and creating awareness with their leadership.
BAWI will support the advancement and enrichment of their team members to promote a more equitable distribution of women throughout their corporate chain. BAWIs mission is to support team members in the workplace, particularly women, so that they have the necessary tools and confidence to advance their careers at Braskem.