Driving Cultural Change
CSC is a $17 billion global IT services company with more than 90,000 employees serving commercial and government clients worldwide.
Susan Pullin, Vice President of Industry Analyst Relations and Corporate Responsibility, explains that in 2006 CSC launched a series of strategic initiatives—called Project Accelerate—with a view toward strengthening leadership to build a more inclusive and diverse workplace. Project Accelerate is now an ongoing strategic plan designed to proactively accelerate growth and profitability and improve customer service across all areas of CSC’s business.
The Project Accelerate commitment began with the hiring of a Vice President of Culture—who leads the initiative in collaboration with other senior leaders and reports directly to the CEO. As the program has evolved, it has supported various cultural structural changes, and, most recently, Project Accelerate sponsored an Ideation Event that drew tens of thousands of employee participants.
A range of key programs have been launched, including those specifically designed to support cultural transformation from the perspective of leadership recognition, recruitment, and retention. Through the CSC Leadership Academy, for example, innovative leadership resources are made available to anyone who is interested—and this signals to the workforce the importance of conveying an inclusive approach to leadership. Meanwhile Project Accelerate’s “Let’s Talk CSC” project has inspired some 2,000 senior leaders to meet each month and engage in dialog with their teams to enhance knowledge and awareness of cultural-change goals related to corporate diversity and inclusion.
During Project Accelerate’s popular “Ideation Events,” employees are invited to share ideas, collectively solve problems, and gain a keener appreciation of the company’s global employee community. CSC even revamped its brand and logo to better align with the change in culture and express employee commitment to putting the organization’s new values into practice.
CSC also launched the Global Diversity Council (GDC), and the CEO challenged the members of the GDC to define and recommend programs that support a global workforce across countries and cultural differences—to ensure the implementation of successful diversity initiatives. One of the first actions taken by the GDC was adding same sex-domestic-partner benefit coverage to the company’s USA benefits program. CSC also works closely with diversity partners that include the Department of Labor’s Office of Disability Employment Policy, the United Negro College Fund, the Hispanic Scholarship Fund, and the United States Army’s Wounded Warrior Transition Command. In addition, GDC sponsors Employee Resource Groups, in which employees meet to share ideas and form professional and mentoring relationships, and it created CSC Employee Messaging. This program enhances language-translation services to ensure that employee messaging is respectful of cultural and social language differences.
“We have always been flexible and willing to try something,” says Pullin. “We recognize that culture change in a global setting means very different things for each geography, and, therefore, we needed to create momentum, excitement, and involvement. Pushing culture change alongside strategic change—and, in fact, viewing it as a key enabler of the strategy—has paid significant dividends both to employee morale and strategic achievement.”
CareerFOCUS Magazine™ and the National Eagle Leadership Institute® salute CSC – winner of the 2009 NELI AWARD honoring stellar leadership in corporate responsibility.