For many in the world of work, DE&I initiatives are typically crafted exclusively for the benefit of employees. But Megan Ksenzakovic does DE&I for contingent workers, and does it well, at Bristol Myers Squibb.
“I’ve been attracted to the work,” says the pharma giant’s director, global contingent workforce. Ksenzakovic sits in the talent acquisition department but credits the program’s success to a healthy partnership between talent acquisition, procurement and supplier diversity teams as well as BMS’ inclusive approach to contingent workers by embracing them within the general workforce — which is well supported by BMS leadership.
Opening the company’s resource groups to non-employees creates an inclusive community. “It was a giant launch forward … for non-employees to join our people and business resource groups. … It allows us to immerse and connect further,” she says.
This inclusion also fortifies the employer brand, which then helps to attract and retain the right contingent talent — a pipeline for BMS’ full-time staff.
In addition to the accessibility of the resource groups, BMS feels it is important to celebrate and promote just how beneficial DE&I engagement can be.
For example, during an Autism Acceptance month internal call, a neurodiverse worker agreed to be interviewed along with their supervisor — both discussing the success of the engagement, the worker’s time at BMS and the overall positive experience.
Thanks to such conversations and the relationships Ksenzakovic and team have built across departments, engagement managers have access to many channels of talent who can bring so much more than just hard skills to BMS.
Ksenzakovic continually enters into new discussions and partnerships that expand the program’s DE&I scope. While there is work yet to be done, the team is proud that the “conversations are happening, which is terrific,” she says.
Outside the business world, Ksenzakovic loves swimming, exploring local shops and experiences, ecology, playing games, and laughing loudly. An ally and an advocate of the LGBTQ+ community, she is a proud member of FreeMomHugs, an organization focused on ensuring LGBTQ+ youth are seen and supported. “[Being an ally] sets off a cycle,” she says. “You want to do the work … so once you start doing something, it kind of makes you want to do more of it.”
2022 DE&I Influencers List