Making the Most of Employee Resource Groups (ERGs)
How Workplace Communities Can Drive Business Success
Do you have a fresh perspective or outlook that could help your organization to achieve its goals or improve its working practices? Are you looking for a network of people with whom you can be fully yourself, with a shared identity or life experience?
If you can answer "yes" to both questions, and you know co-workers who feel the same way, setting up an Employee Resource Group (ERG) could provide a positive influence within your company, and boost your own job satisfaction.
Employee Resource Groups, sometimes known as affinity or business resource groups, provide a forum for people with shared interests or experiences to meet, discuss and act on the issues that are important to them.
They are a popular way to promote diversity and inclusion in larger companies, and they can offer tangible business benefits. Household names such as Ford, Walmart and Microsoft (and even the CIA!) have ERGs.
But they can also present risks for employees and employers. In this article, we explore the pros and cons of ERGs, to help you to decide whether they'd be beneficial or appropriate for you and your organization.
We will refer to Employee Resource Groups throughout this article as ERGs. The term should not be confused with Alderfer's ERG Theory.