Posts Tagged ‘LGBT owned businesses’

My personal experience on the NGLCC’s trade mission to Mexico!

Blog author Stan Kimer making a point during his presentation on global leadership (photo by Abraham Saraya Photography)

Blog author Stan Kimer making a point during his presentation on global leadership (photo by Abraham Saraya Photography)


On March 11-14th, I traveled to Mexico City to be part of the 2014 National Gay and Lesbian Chamber of Commerce’s Trade Mission and LGBT Summit of the Americas. It was an exciting combination of attending and presenting workshops with business leaders from across Latin America, meeting with prospective large Mexican clients, reuniting with old friends, and even a little sightseeing. In addition to this excellent overview (link) of the trip from the NGLCC, I wanted to briefly share some of my personal experience along three areas.

1) LGBT Economic Empowerment. It was exciting to see first hand how the movement for growing economic equality for LGBT-owned businesses is expanding beyond the USA to be truly global. As it enters into its second decade, the NGLCC is expanding across North and South America and empowering LGBT-owned businesses to grow. In addition to the 20 delegates from the US, there were approximately 80 government officials, business owners, executives and chamber leaders from Mexico and several other Latin American countries. The opening plenary included the historic signing of a cooperative agreement between the NGLCC and Mexico’s Council to Eliminate and Prevent Discrimination (COPRED) (link to COPRED website – in Spanish)

Blog author serving on a panel sharing how IBM took its LGBT diversity initiatives global. (Photo by Abraham Saraya Photography)

Blog author serving on a panel sharing how IBM took its LGBT diversity initiatives global. (Photo by Abraham Saraya Photography)


2) My own business development. One day was dedicated to meetings set up by the US Commercial Service, part of the US Department of Commerce. The mission of this team is to spur US economic growth through the exporting of US products and services to trading partners outside the US. I was very pleased to meet with 3 large well qualified Mexican companies that had a real need for my innovative Total Engagement Career Mapping offering, as well as the Executive President of Mexico’s largest association of human resources professionals (link to my March 7th blog about my conversation with Pedro Borda Hartmann … our discussion about the top HR challenges facing Mexico.)
It was so great to reunite with long-time Mexican IBM friend Gabriel Gomez and tour Teotihuacan

It was so great to reunite with long-time Mexican IBM friend Gabriel Gomez and tour Teotihuacan


3) Sharing in the workshops and panels. Finally, I was privileged to both give a presentation titled “Leadership for the New Diverse Global Economy: Effectively Leading an International Team,” a critical topic since expanding businesses globally is so much more a reality given the global web and increasing multicultural mix of people in any locale; and to serve on panel with four other people discussing expanding LGBT diversity programs globally. I was proud to speak of how my former employer IBM expanded our LGBT initiatives from the US to be worldwide continually from around year 2000 up through the current time.

And then the icing on the cake was reuniting with several old IBM and NGLCC friends and two half-days of sightseeing in and around beautiful Mexico City.

A focus on Supplier Diversity – Part 1 of 2

As I kick off a new year of business for Total Engagement Consulting, I will start where I left off at the end of 2012. As the year came to a close, I seemed to be involved in various items around the hot growing area of Supplier Diversity. As companies and governments seek to find the widest selection of qualified suppliers to deliver cost-effective and innovative products and services, it makes great business sense to focus on a supplier diversity program that throws out the net to encompass the widest possible range of suppliers.

The Society for Human Resource Management (SHRM) is the world’s largest association devoted to human resource management,  representing more than 250,000 members in over 140 countries.

The Society for Human Resource Management (SHRM) is the world’s largest association devoted to human resource management, representing more than 250,000 members in over 140 countries.


In Mid-December, an online SHRM (Society for Human Resource Management) article was published where I was one of a handful of industry experts extensively quoted. Here is a link to that article, “Diverse Suppliers Can Lead to Diverse Talent” by Rebecca R. Hastings. NOTE: you need to be SHRM member to access the article, one of the benefits of joining SHRM! Ms. Hastings also provides a lot of useful data from an Institute for Supply Management (ISM) and ties the data in nicely to her main points

The main theme of this article is that supplier diversity efforts do have a strong connection to similar efforts to recruit and retain the best employees via the widest possible diverse pool of candidates. Some of the particular points that I made in my interview with Ms. Hastings which were included in the article included:
• Though the diversity procurement function may reside in an organization’s procurement function or human resources function, the two areas must team closely together in these efforts.
• Companies should promote their diversity procurement efforts to be able to get the best suppliers from the widest possible pool.
• Federal and state government efforts around supplier diversity have really helped the economic development of minority-owned businesses.
• When employees know that their company is reaching a diverse range of suppliers, that will have a positive impact on their productivity, engagement, and recruitment.

Total Engagement Consulting by Kimer is a certified diverse supplier (LGBT-BE) via the NGLCC

Total Engagement Consulting by Kimer is a certified diverse supplier (LGBT-BE) via the NGLCC

In addition to myself, another LGBT-BE (Lesbian Gay Bisexual Transgender Business Enterprise) certified via the National Gay and Lesbian Chamber of Commerce (NGLCC) consultant, Jennifer Brown of Jennifer Brown Consulting, was quoted. We are both participating in the newest growing area of supplier diversity – LGBT owned businesses.

Early next week I will publish part 2 of this series which will include useful links to other recently publish articles around supplier diversity.

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