Conversations and Career Journeys: Exploring Two Innovative Ways I’m Making Inclusivity a Priority

Sponsored by The Hanover Insurance Group

Marie Mack. Photo courtesy of LLMack.

Marie Mack. Photo courtesy of LLMack.

Profile Picture

“Our differences light the way, not darken the path.” 

That’s what Marie Mack, a P&C Compliance Analyst within the Office of General Counsel at The Hanover Insurance Group, has to say about inclusivity. Mack’s impact at The Hanover also stretches way beyond her role — she plays a pivotal role in evolving inclusion, diversity, and equity (IDE) at the company and is one of many employees who is ensuring that The Hanover is honoring individuals within the broader scope of humanity.

Mack is an engaged member of several business resource groups (BRGs), acting as the co-chair of the Proud to Empower BRG, the Chair of the Talent Lifecycle committee for the Women@Hanover BRG, and as a purposeful conversations facilitator. “Creating a culture of inclusivity is critical for enterprises,” Mack tells us, “and this work has to be more than just what you say. You can not be successful in advancing your organization if you are all talk — it takes intentional and purposeful action to really drive change.” Luckily, The Hanover is a proponent of action and has continuously shown their “willingness to push forward initiatives for change,” says Mack. 

Here, Mack discusses two of these initiatives and how she’s using her voice and passion to make The Hanover an even more inclusive place to work!

Changing the future of work with innovative initiatives.

At The Hanover, there are many ways that you can make a difference. In Mack’s case, she says that “I sought out ways to be involved in creating an environment where the background and experiences of each person are valued by the organization and where everyone has an equal opportunity to bring their authentic, diverse perspectives to the enterprise.”

As a result, she’s now a leader in two different (but equally important) innovative initiatives at The Hanover:

1.  ‘Crossing the Rivers of Race’ Purposeful Conversations

“As a Hanover facilitator certified by the Future Work Institute, I lead purposeful conversations on race through our ‘Crossing the Rivers of Race in America’ series,” explains Mack. The "Crossing the Rivers of Race" series was brought to The Hanover by their Kinship Village BRG and is a deep dive into race relations, bringing individuals through the journey of marginalized populations and the historical barriers they have faced.

Mack was upskilled to lead these conversations thanks to the support of her leader and the Hanover Enterprise Learning team. Using these skills, she cultivates an environment of psychological safety and allyship that creates a space for individual and collective reflection on how a better understanding of the past can impact our present-day experience, equipping us to improve the future.

“During these small-group conversations, we explore historical events to gain knowledge that we can apply and correlate to present-day perspectives and events,” Mack tells us. These discussions help employees reflect and react to current events and how they affect people throughout the organization. “By addressing systemic biases, we can continue the necessary work toward creating a level playing field for all individuals,” says Mack.

And Mack’s dedication and hard work are clearly well-received by participants. The sessions are highly rated in post-surveys, with:

  • 100% of participants indicating that this program would help them to be more successful in their role.

  • 100% of participants indicating that what they learned in “Crossing the Rivers of Race” would help them to be a better ally, a better employee, or a better leader. 

  • Participants giving the session an overall net promoter score of 4.97/5.00 (which is an indication of how likely an employee is to recommend this training to another colleague). 

2. Individual Development Plan Journeys.

As part of her passion for helping women advance into leadership positions, Mack also took on a role as the Talent Lifecycle chair for the Women@Hanover BRG. Here, she focuses on “elevating women and their allies through development planning and professional networking,” says Mack.

One part of this work is the Individual Development Plan (IDP) Journey, which Mack and the  Talent Lifecycle Women@Hanover Talent Lifecycle committee created in conjunction with Enterprise Learning in 2022. “The journey includes a panel discussion among leaders sharing the what and why of IDPs, workshops around IDP creation and usage, peer-to-peer Coaching Circles to discuss triumphs and challenges areas within the IDP process, and a reflection session to discuss skills gained and to brainstorm next steps in the individual development journey,” Mack elaborates. “Being involved in the process from creation to facilitation enabled me to add a diverse perspective to ensure we are preparing all, especially underrepresented groups, to thrive and succeed.” 

The result of this program? As of today, over 450 participants have created an Individual Development Plan, better preparing them to develop their careers here at The Hanover.

The future of inclusivity.

Mack’s impressive work is far from over. Looking ahead, she tells us that her goal is to have “engagement from everyone within the organization.” And she won’t be alone in reaching this goal — The Hanover is filled with individuals who are committed to making a difference, such as these other business resource group leaders.

Further, Mack hopes that other companies will also show this dedication to inclusivity. Since, “being open to all perspectives will include talent that would have otherwise been overlooked, excluding experiences and perspectives that would drive our company forward,” emphasizes Mack.

As for what she’s learned along the way, Mack says that: “For women, people of color, and allies who find this path daunting, it is important to become aware of these historic lessons of exclusion and that building the courage and strength to challenge and break through lights the way to inclusion. So, take the first step in your inclusivity journey today.”

Fairygodboss is proud to partner with The Hanover Insurance Group. Find a job there today!