Submitted by International Paper Company
MEMPHIS, Tenn. October 19, 2022 /CSRwire/ – With our global commitment to diversity and inclusion, we know that diversity means something different in every geography where we operate. That is why we sat down with Mariateresa Ampolo Rella, our head of the EMEA People Organization Development and HR for HR, to hear how her team is bringing people from various backgrounds across the EMEA Region together to foster a culture of inclusion.
Interviewer: What does Diversity and Inclusion look like at International Paper in EMEA?
Mariateresa: EMEA is a beautiful, diverse, multicultural and heterogeneous region. It is made of different countries and nationalities. In our facilities, we speak Spanish, Italian, French, Arabic, Polish, Portuguese and English, which is the language that allows us to have common ground and mutual understanding. In IP’s EMEA locations, a variety of people with different nationalities are working together and interacting every day.
Interviewer: How is EMEA working to achieve the Vision 2030 goal to reach 30% overall representation of women companywide?
Mariateresa: Every country in EMEA has developed an action plan with activities that are tailor-made to target each country’s specific needs and cultural backgrounds. We are also creating a D&I network to engage D&I Champions in every country as well as other team members who are passionate about the work being done in this space.
Interviewer: How do you create awareness and educate EMEA team members about Diversity and Inclusion?
Mariateresa: D&I is a journey that continuously touches our culture and will show positive long-term results. This is not just an HR journey. D&I requires the entire business to take action and every IP employee plays a key role. As a result, we actively embed D&I in everything we do – from following the training program with an eye on our unconscious biases and ways to be more inclusive to hosting meetings where under-represented groups are at the table and given a chance to be heard. In EMEA, we prioritize D&I learning, which not only consists of e-learnings but also includes face-to-face workshops and other initiatives.
Interviewer: Can you elaborate on how EMEA is fostering a culture of inclusivity at International Paper?
Mariateresa: We are fostering inclusion in a variety of ways. We celebrate diversity by sharing team member spotlight articles, promoting the Cultivating Inclusion learning program and informing senior leaders about D&I updates through EMEA’s Quarterly Gazette Newsletter. We also facilitate workshops where we listen and help employees take action in the D&I space; and we create cross-country initiatives where people from different backgrounds and cultures can interact and network.
Interviewer: Are there any employee groups in EMEA that help support IP’s D&I goals?
Mariateresa: There are three Employee Networking Circles (ENCs) in EMEA, which are open to all team members. These ENCs include: Gender Balance, Generational Diversity and People with Disabilities. The focus of each group is aligned to EMEA’s overarching D&I goals and the specific needs of our region. Additionally, each ENC has at least one business leader that sponsors their group to ensure the ENC’s success and alignment with our business objectives.
Interviewer: What is your favorite thing about working in the Diversity and Inclusion space in EMEA?
Mariateresa: I feel very lucky to work with such passionate and professional colleagues who always add value and share new, rich perspectives on how to tackle challenges and solve problems.
About International Paper
International Paper (NYSE: IP) is a leading global supplier of renewable fiber-based products. We produce corrugated packaging products that protect and promote goods, and enable worldwide commerce, and pulp for diapers, tissue and other personal care products that promote health and wellness. Headquartered in Memphis, Tenn., we employ approximately 38,000 colleagues globally. We serve customers worldwide, with manufacturing operations in North America, Latin America, North Africa and Europe. Net sales for 2021 were $19.4 billion. See how we’re building a better future for people, the planet, and our company at internationalpaper.com/Vision-2030.
About International Paper
International Paper (NYSE: IP) is a global producer of planet-friendly packaging, pulp and other fiber-based products, and one of North America’s largest recyclers. Headquartered in Memphis, Tenn., we employ approximately 39,000 colleagues globally who are committed to creating what’s next. We serve customers worldwide, with manufacturing operations in North America, Latin America, North Africa and Europe. Net sales for 2022 were $21.2 billion. Additional information can be found by visiting InternationalPaper.com.
About International Paper - EMEA
In Europe, Middle East & Africa (EMEA), International Paper focuses on the production and marketing of fiber-based packaging and pulp, employing approximately 4,200 people. As a leading supplier of high-quality corrugated containers for a multitude of applications, we serve customers throughout the region from our network of two recycled containerboard mills and 23 box plants in France, Italy, Morocco, Portugal and Spain. Pulp production is centered in Gdansk, Poland. Other products available from International Paper in the region include Kraft linerboard and recycled containerboard, as well as pulp.
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