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Pinterest Commissions Review of Workplace Culture After Recent Revelations of Discriminatory Practices

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Earlier in the month, Pinterest CEO Ben Silbermann committed to addressing issues of racial inequality within the company, after two former employees publicly criticized the platform’s #BlackLivesMatter stance, and detailed their experiences, as employees of color, within its workplace culture.

Today, Pinterest has taken its next steps, announcing that it will undergo an independent audit of its processes, to be conducted by WilmerHale.

As per Pinterest:

“We know that building a diverse, equitable and inclusive workplace for every employee is fundamentally important for Pinterest. Our decision to commission an independent review reporting to the Special Committee is a critical step. We look forward to doing an objective assessment to identify opportunities for improving our culture and our company.”

The review will include an in-depth assessment of Pinterest’s policies and practices concerning discrimination, harassment, and other workplace issues. The review will also evaluate how Pinterest promotes and compensates employees, and how the company responds to and investigates complaints of discrimination, harassment, and retaliation.

The initial revelations, in light of the #BlackLivesMatter protests, came as something of a surprise, particularly given Pinterest’s various initiatives to address racial inequality, through both its hiring process and its products.

Indeed, back in January, as part of its sixth Diversity Report, Pinterest touted the fact that it had exceeded all of its hiring goals in this area.

Pinterest hiring goals

The former employees both shared experiences of being unfairly paid and unfairly targeted by white employees. Both also noted that Pinterest’s response to their concerns was inadequate.

Silbermann himself also seemed to have been taken off-guard by the reports, and vowed to implement change:

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“I’m embarrassed to say that I didn’t understand the depth of the hardship and hurt many of our team members have experienced. I need to do better. My leaders need to do better. And Pinterest needs to be better.”

This new investigation will be the first step along that path, while Pinterest has also implemented some immediate steps as a result of its initial findings:

  • We strengthened our diverse slate requirement for recruiting as we work to improve representation, especially at senior levels.
  • We set clear goals to increase the representation of content we show to Pinners.
  • We are revamping our Unconscious Bias and Leading Inclusive Teams trainings. These expanded offerings will be available to every employee by the end of July.

In some ways, the Pinterest case highlights a level of racial bias that many may not be aware exists, even within their own organizations. Systemic process is difficult to overcome, because its learned behavior, it’s not always a conscious, intended thing. That’s not to say that all of the noted incidents at Pinterest were unintended, but the case highlights the need for all businesses to take a deeper look at their culture in order to identify potential areas of failure in this respect. 

Socialmediatoday.com

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LinkedIn Adds New Features for Company Pages, Including Post Templates and Link Stickers

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LinkedIn has outlined its latest batch of updates for Company Pages, most of which had already been previewed in some capacity, but are now being rolled out on a broader basis.

First off, LinkedIn’s making its new post templates available to all company pages.

LinkedIn post templates

As you can see in these examples, LinkedIn’s post templates, as they sound, provide a range of visual enhancements for your LinkedIn updates, which could help to make them stand out in feeds.

LinkedIn originally launched post templates for individual users last month, but now, it’s making them available for Company Page updates as well.

As per LinkedIn:

Create engaging, actionable LinkedIn content easier than ever with customizable templates, available directly in the LinkedIn app, with no third-party tools required.”

I mean, I don’t know that these types of posts really fit with LinkedIn’s professional approach. But then again, as many have noted, LinkedIn is increasingly becoming more like Facebook anyway, with more personal posts and updates that are less focused on professional aspects.

And that seems to be working – LinkedIn’s parent company Microsoft keeps reporting ‘record levels of engagement’ in the app every quarter, so maybe this is actually a good, valuable addition.

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We’ll see how people feel about it when every other LinkedIn ‘thinkfluencer’ is posting using these templates. You can access post templates in the mobile app by tapping the ‘use template’ option in the post composer menu.

As an addition to this, LinkedIn’s also making its new link stickers available for Company Pages too, which could help to drive more direct response to your updates.

LinkedIn link sticker

On another front, LinkedIn will also now enable all Company Pages to pin comments beneath their brand posts.

LinkedIn Pinned Comments

The rollout for this feature also started last month, with some users seeing the option to pin comments in the app.

That could be a good way to spark more focused engagement, and highlight top fans, while you could also use this to simply boost interactions by pinning the comment with the most engagement at the top of the reply chain.  

As a reminder, LinkedIn Company Pages can also pin an update for similar purpose.

Finally, LinkedIn has also added a new Our featured commitments’ section for Company Pages, where brands will be able to showcase their most important values.

“Increasingly in today’s market, job seekers are evaluating potential employers based on their values. They’re interested in knowing where companies stand on issues that are important to them, such as DEI, work-life balance, sustainability, etc. To provide greater insight and connections, LinkedIn is enabling employers to highlight these commitments on their LinkedIn company page to define their talent brand and values.” 

Brands will be able to include up to five commitments in their featured commitments section, while you’ll also be able to host content that demonstrates the same, all of which will be displayed in a sub-panel in the ‘About’ section of your Page.

These are some potentially handy updates, with the link stickers and pinned comments standing out as likely the most valuable additions for LinkedIn page managers.

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Post templates I’m not as sold on, especially for brands – but then again, there may be ways to use these templates to improve the presentation of your posts, and maybe, that’ll increase overall engagement.

You can read about all of LinkedIn’s latest company page updates here.

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