New Canadians Help Each Other and all Staff to Succeed at RBC

Employee resource group fosters success through networking, peer coaching and mentoring.

At RBC, five different employee resource groups (ERGs) bring together employees from shared backgrounds and give them resources to help them develop both personally and professionally.

MOSAIC, the ERG for visible minorities and newcomers in Canada, was first created in 2008 by a small group of employees who wanted to support other employees who were also visible minorities or newcomers to Canada. Over the years, it has grown to become RBC’s largest ERG, with more than 2,500 members in 12 regional chapters across the country.

“Members have diverse backgrounds, life experiences and roles within the company. But what makes the group so successful is their passion to help other employees succeed by creating an inclusive culture,” says Justin Ramdeen, who leads MOSAIC’s National Coordination and Support team.

Fostering Success

The group fosters that success through networking, peer coaching, mentoring and educating other employees across the organization. It also works to connect colleagues to supports in the community and personal and professional development opportunities, such as cultural competency training.

Through all of this work, MOSAIC helps increase the engagement and retention of all employees, not just visible minorities and new Canadians.

The group fosters that success through networking, peer coaching, mentoring and educating other employees across the organization. It also works to connect colleagues to supports in the community and personal and professional development opportunities, such as cultural competency training.

Through all of this work, MOSAIC helps increase the engagement and retention of all employees, not just visible minorities and new Canadians.

Size Doesn’t Matter

“Creating a group like MOSAIC is easy, as long as you have employees who are passionate about helping colleagues and peers from similar backgrounds,” says Justin. “It doesn’t cost any money to start and smaller companies can partner with community organizations for newcomers to provide more formal mentoring, coaching, training and events.”

And that’s exactly what Sue Danahy, RBC branch manager at Carlingwood Shopping Centre in Ottawa, did when she helped start the local MOSAIC chapter in 2012. Since then the chapter has actively grown to number over 100 strong.

“The key to our ongoing success in Ottawa is getting involved in programs, events or initiatives that are already moving forward,” says Sue Danahy, who co-chairs MOSAIC for RBC in the city.

To start, Sue ensured the MOSAIC champions in each bank branch took part in the cross-cultural training offered by Hire Immigrants Ottawa. MOSAIC members where then invited to sign up to be mentors to new Canadians looking for work in the financial sector through Ottawa Community Immigrant Services Organization.

So far, eight employees have signed up to be mentors and all of them are undergoing the cross-cultural training through Hire Immigrants Ottawa. The mentoring experience aims to help give them the opportunity to broaden their leadership skills they might not otherwise get the chance to develop in their daily roles.

Next up, the local chapter is organizing a career event, bringing employees in different roles from across the country together so MOSAIC members can see all the opportunities available to them at RBC.

“People are proud to belong to MOSAIC,” says Sue. “Not only do they have the opportunity to develop a stronger connection to other employees and raise their visibility across the organization, but they have the chance to up-skill their leadership capabilities as well.”

Tips for Employers

  • Find a few employees who are passionate about connecting with and helping other employees who are also new Canadians to lead the group and engage others.
  • Focus on networking and peer mentoring, neither of which cost anything and can be implemented with minimal training. These activities can help build employees leadership skills.
  • Connect to community organizations that can offer training and mentoring programs.

Related

Employee Resource Groups at RBC
RBC Employee Resource Groups help bring together employees from a shared background and gives them a resource to help them develop both personally and professionally.

hireimmigrants.ca local resources section
connect with community organizations for various resources and volunteer opportunities such as mentoring skilled immigrants.

Athina Schloo, Director of HR Employee Programs and Initiatives at RBC explains how one of the bank’s employee resource groups foster success for new hires through networking, peer coaching and mentoring.

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