GET EMAIL UPDATES FROM POWERTOFLY
Thales Usa Inc.

Performance And Excellence Are Bigger Than Disability

Below is an article originally written by Patrice Caine, Chairman and CEO at PowerToFly Partner Thales, and published on December 3, 2018. Go to Thales' page on PowerToFly to see their open positions and learn more.

Today is International Day of Persons with Disabilities. It's an opportunity for all of us to remember that in France and around the world, half of us will face a disability at some time in our careers. Disabilities can be visible or invisible and may take many forms, such as debilitating diseases, physical or mental disabilities, chronic illnesses, vision or hearing impairments, and many others.

In addition to meeting mandatory disability employment rates in certain countries, we at Thales aspire to make our company a welcoming place to work and one where every employee feels their differences are valued.

Half of us will face a disability at some time in our careers.

Non-discrimination is of course the first step. It's a constant battle if we want to create a workplace in which people feel they are treated equally.

The second step is diversity. A company's workforce should be as rich and varied as society itself in terms of gender, age, generation, ethnic origin, social and educational background, sexual orientation, but also disability.

The third step is inclusion, meaning the ability of an organisation to value all profiles and enable them to contribute to collective success. In other words, our employees should feel that they can be themselves at all times.

We began our efforts in 1992 when we signed our first agreement to integrate people with disabilities into the company. We strive to share best practices across our different sites and entities to provide everyone with the best opportunities.

Then we revised our Human Resources policy to include disability requirements. To retain employees with disabilities, we are aiming for universal accessibility. We want to be sure that employees can get to work and access their desks or workstations, and that they have the IT tools they need.

We are also committed to partnership, like our recent partnership in France with the Aspie-Friendly network and Université Paris-Est Créteil (UPEC), and we put our commitments into practice by integrating and training employees with disabilities. We create partnerships with schools to bring young people into the labour market, and we are working with university researchers on ways to detect "weak signals" in the workplace that could indicate potential situations of professional exclusion.

Our aim is to adapt the workplace to people with disabilities, not isolate them. Practically, that means modifying workstations for the entire team when it makes sense, and informing, training and mentoring teams and managers, not only before a new employee with a disability joins the team but throughout their time at the company. We also provide management training to promote an inclusive environment.

Integrating people with disabilities is an opportunity and strength for our employees and for our Group as a whole.

I would like to share two examples of Thales employees who are making that inclusive company a reality.

Jean* was a young man training to become an electronics technician. Like thousands of young students before him, he needed to find a work-study internship in a company to receive his diploma. Jean is deaf. To integrate him into the Group, we installed technical equipment so he could communicate with his team, but even more importantly, we informed employees of his disability and provided basic sign language training for people in his team. Jean was able to complete his internship and has since joined the ranks of our 65,000 employees.

Pierre* was an engineering student on a work-study contract at Thales in France. Like all engineers in his class, Pierre had to complete an internship abroad to receive his diploma. Pierre has Asperger's Syndrome. Colleagues at his site in France came together to help him find an internship at Thales in the UK. In addition, his French internship supervisor went to meet with his internship supervisor in England, and Pierre had people to support him during his overseas adventure. Two employees, one English and one French, volunteered to help him — one in the UK and the other to serve as his mentor at his site in France. Thales even organised a visit for his parents so they could help Pierre settle into his new surroundings. Pierre has since finished his internship in the UK and has joined the Group.

Because Jean and Pierre were able to be themselves in these situations, and because they can count on their colleagues — and their colleagues can count on them — our company is becoming a place where sharing, mutual trust, open-mindedness and innovation reign. Integrating people with disabilities is an opportunity and a strength for our employees and for our Group as a whole. Disability is everybody's business!

* All names have been changed.

popular

10 Women in Tech Share Their Tips for Working From Home

How to stay productive and positive while working remotely

With the outbreak of COVID-19, scores of people are finding themselves working remotely for the first time. Trying to stay productive while at home with so many distractions can be overwhelming, so we asked women tech leaders what they were doing to work from home successfully. Along with getting a great pair of noise canceling headphones (game changer!), they have 10 excellent tips to help you thrive in a work-from-home environment.

READ MORE AND DISCUSS Show less
popular

5 Life-Changing Products You Didn't Know Were Invented by Women

I've been thinking about women's ingenuity a lot recently; after all, crises like the one we're facing now fuel innovation. They especially fuel innovation from those who are on the frontlines, in desperate need of solutions.

READ MORE AND DISCUSS Show less
Diversity & Inclusion

She’s Paving the Way for Women in Cybersecurity: How She Went from First-Generation College Student to IT Leader

A Conversation with Freddie Mac's Stephanie Johnson

When Stephanie Johnson, currently an Information Security Manager at Freddie Mac, was just starting her career as an IT professional, she found herself sitting in her car one night after work asking herself, "Why am I not being heard? Should I adjust my tone? Posture? What I'm saying?"

READ MORE AND DISCUSS Show less
popular

9 Positive Things to Come Out of the Coronavirus: COVID-19’s Silver Linings

For when you can't read one more bad-news story.

I would never argue that the novel coronavirus is a good thing. COVID-19 has or will cause many deaths, a long-lasting global economic slowdown, and rampant general stress and anxiety.

READ MORE AND DISCUSS Show less
Webinars

Parents' Panel: Supporting Your Fellow Parents' Transition to Remote Work

As schools across the nation close, and the majority of businesses mandate remote work, working parents are now faced with the ultimate challenge - how to balance their families and jobs under one roof while COVID-19 still remains a concern.

PowerToFly is bringing thought-leading professionals (and working moms!) to speak about balancing our new realities and how to best optimize your time at home. In this panel, we'll discuss maneuvering the difficulties of working from home from taking conference calls to juggle homeschooling/ childcare.

Don't feel the pressure, your children, partner and pets are welcome to join this virtual chat!

Join us for this live Q&A to learn new tips, strategies, and hear personal anecdotes from our panelists that have shaped these women into the incredible founders and mothers they are today. You will have the opportunity to ask questions during our free, virtual conversation and have the chance to snag a giveaway sponsored by PowerToFly and our panelists!



Meet the Panelists:

Christine Michel Carter, Creator of Mompreneur and Me

Featured in The New York Times and The Washington Post, Christine Michel Carter is the #1 global voice for working moms. Christine clarifies misconceptions about working mom consumers for brands and serves as an amplifier of their personal truths.

Mary Beth Ferrante, Co-Founder & CEO of WRK/360

Mary Beth Ferrante is a mom of two and advocate for creating inclusive workplaces for parents. She is the Co-Founder & CEO of WRK/360, a career development platform designed for working parents and managers to help companies support, retain and recruit working parents. In addition, she is a senior contributor for Forbes and her work has been featured in Today, Thrive Global, Working Mother, FairyGodBoss, ScaryMommy, and other leading publishers.

Amy Henderson, Founding CEO of TendLab

Amy Henderson is the founding CEO of TendLab, a consultancy addressing the challenges and opportunities parenthood brings into the workplace. TendLab's research-based approach reveals how parenthood can unlock career-critical skills--such as resiliency, courage, and the ability to collaborate--skills which are especially important during this COVID-19 pandemic.

Loading...
© Rebelmouse 2020