Celebrating Diversity, Equity and Inclusion (DEI) at Crown Worldwide Group.

In 1965 a young American travelled to Yokohama in Japan. He spoke little Japanese but had a big dream to make it simpler for families to move their belongings across the world from one country to another.

Since Jim Thompson founded Crown, it has expanded to 265 locations in almost 50 countries and employs a team of over 3,000 comprising 74 nationalities, speaking 58 languages.

Enhancing diversity, equity and inclusion (DEI) is a critical part of our vision, values and strategy.  Diversity is in our DNA and is key to the innovation and growth of our brands and businesses, globally. Inclusion and equity are about leveraging this diversity to achieve results.

A group DEI strategy was launched in 2018 and is reviewed each year with attention given to key focus areas for the group. We regularly review our policies and practices around culture, gender, and other DEI dimensions to ensure that we are continuing to meet the needs of our employees, enabling us to realize their full potential. DEI practices are ever evolving, and we continue to monitor them to ensure our strategy and planning around DEI continues to develop to meet changing needs.

We want to ensure we are creating an environment in which everyone is valued, respected, heard, feels safe to bring their differences to work each day and where they can always contribute. To achieve this, and as a reminder to all to be constantly and consistently considerate of DEI, we dedicate a week each year to celebrating, championing and learning about diversity in all its forms, one of many initiatives in our annual calendar that ensures a razor-sharp focus on DEI. 
DEI Week at Crown

Every year, we organise our own DEI week in September dedicated to celebrating and learning more about diversity in the workplace. This year, to mark DEI Week (26 to 30 September), we got together to ‘think differently about disability’. Too often, we assume that diversity is simply about gender, ethnicity, or sexuality, but it entails so much more. 

One key area that can sometimes be missed from the diversity agenda is ability. With one in seven people living with some form of disability globally, we knew it was a topic we needed to explore. We held two live sessions for Crown staff to share their lived experience of disability.  The sessions were attended by staff from across the Crown world, who explained much they appreciated the business acknowledging and tackling this subject. 

In celebration of DEI Week, we encouraged all our employees to take one or more of the 60 plus eLearning courses available on our online learning portal, iLearn, throughout the month of September. Some of these courses are offered in different languages (English, Japanese, Korean, Portuguese, Spanish, German, and French), which makes them more accessible to employees whose first language is not English. 

Our DEI courses cover a range of topics, including how to be an ally, preventing discrimination, cultural awareness, neurodiversity and hiring a diverse workforce. Videos on DEI-related topics were also shared, such as defining the difference between equity and equality.

At Crown, our leadership actively demonstrates their commitment to DEI by taking the lead in sponsoring DEI initiatives. Senior staff from across the world form part of our DEI Steering Group and work with our DEI Alliance Network to embed DEI practices at work. 

The Steering Group filmed and shared videos explaining what DEI means and how to recognise unconscious bias. Managers held an “Inspire Hour” where they set up a meeting to complete a relevant iLearn course collectively as a team and then discuss the issues raised. 
Events around the world:

Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia:
The Group Marketing team in Kuala Lumpur organised “Inspire Hour” in conjunction with DEI Week. The team took two iLearn courses about appreciating diversity in the workplace and discussed their learnings and how the knowledge could be applied to their daily work. They played a fun game to learn how diversity can be celebrated and used to unify people, over a delicious Malaysian lunch.
people sat around a table with thier lunch
Europe, Middle East and Africa (EMEA):
Our EMEA HR team took iLearn courses on neurodiversity and had a lively discussion afterwards on what they had learnt and how they could apply those learnings.
The Dubai office celebrated DEI Week with an array of activities, including multicultural dancing and a quiz. Everyone brought a piece of their culture to work by dressing up in traditional attire and preparing a specialty dish from their home country.  Teams were quizzed on fun cultural facts and competed in a taste test competition guessing the country of origin of the dishes prepared.