In April 2022, Clyde Companies introduced the Women’s Employee Resource Group (ERG) to enable an environment where women can grow professionally.
This empowering group didn’t begin as a top-down initiative from executives, but from the vision of Julie Warnick, Director of Marketing and Communications. Julie saw the potential of such a group and approached leadership about the formation of ERGs. After securing executive approval based on guiding principles, this initiative quickly evolved into a program for learning, resource-sharing, and mutual support. Monthly meetings address a range of topics centered on women’s development and empowerment.
Kristi Allen, Clyde Companies’ Accounts Receivable Manager, accepted the responsibility of leading the group in these meetings through 2023.
“Leading the Women’s ERG was an obvious choice for me,” Kristi said. “I participated in the Women’s Leadership Institute’s Career Development Series, and it helped me recognize the importance of my role in the company. I wanted to share these insights with other women at Clyde Companies, offering support and building a community.”
Initially, the ERG was exclusive to women from Clyde Companies’ headquarters building. However, it has expanded to include women from subsidiary companies across Utah County, both in-person and online.
Notable speakers like Pat Jones from the Women’s Leadership Institute and Susan Madsen from the Utah Women and Leadership Project have contributed their insights and expertise to the group. Representatives from Saprea, a nonprofit group existing to liberate individuals and society from child sexual abuse and its lasting impacts, also came to talk on trauma in the brain and its effects, while Carrie Roberts, the BYU women’s golf coach, discussed the business advantages of women learning golf and conducted a golf clinic.
Additionally, the ERG offers opportunities for internal speakers to hone their leadership and presentation skills. Several employees have taken advantage of this opportunity and presented on topics ranging from optimizing LinkedIn profiles, leveraging strengths, the power of belief, and more.
“I’ve always admired individuals who can confidently stand before an audience and speak passionately about their beliefs,” Kristi said. “I’ve often hesitated to do that myself. This group has offered both me and many other women the chance to develop that confidence.”
While the ERG primarily focuses on women’s development, it remains inclusive. Male colleagues are invited to participate in universally relevant discussions in a “lunch and learn” setting.
“I’m so proud to work at a company that values the career development of women,” said Elsie Powley, women’s ERG attendee and Clyde Companies’ Community Engagement Manager. “I have been very fortunate to be mentored by incredible men and women here. With all of us achieving our development goals, we will be ready to take Clyde Companies to the next level!”