What Equity, Inclusion & Belonging (EI&B) Means for KFC Pan-Europe

May 17, 2023 10:00 AM ET

KFC has bold ambitions around inclusion. We believe our teams should reflect the same wonderful diversity as our customers around the world and every person should have the opportunity to thrive.

This week, leaders from KFC across Pan-Europe gathered for a day-long workshop on equity, inclusion and belonging with an emphasis on how our commitment to inclusion intersects with KFC’s social purpose of Feeding People’s Potential.

Throughout the room were franchise partners, General Managers, Chief People Officers (CPOs) and People & Culture team members from our business units in Western Europe, Germany, France and Central Eastern Europe.

Our journey to inclusion from the inside-out

The morning kicked off with our KFC Global Chief People Officer Cristi Lockett and Global Director of Inclusion and Capability Carolina Romero discussing KFC’s EI&B strategy and why it’s critical to our business and our brand. Specifically, we celebrated the progress we’ve made in recent years on gender parity, as KFC has reached 52% parity across our teams globally. Looking beyond gender, each market shared their commitment to address additional dimensions of diversity to better reflect our customers and the communities in which we operate.

Then, to further focus our discussion, Chief People and Transformation Officer for KFC Pan-Europe Nathalie Choudet shared context on the highly-diverse ethnic, origin and cultural landscape across the region along with KFC’s biggest opportunities for impact.

Sharing best practices brand-to-brand

The day continued with a panel led by Dr. Rohini Anand, Senior Diversity, Equity and Inclusion Advisor, and author of Leading Global Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion: A Guide for Systemic Change in Multinational Organizations. Through this discussion, HR and diversity leaders from global brands and non-profits including Loreal, Disneyland Paris, Ubisoft and Club 21 Siecle shared how they’ve strategized around diversity efforts and measuring progress, something that can often be challenging. As they shared their perspectives, there were many parallels with the motivations and values that also drive KFC’s commitment to this space, as well as the perceived barriers that we’re all tackling together.

With new insights gained from the panel, participants spent time discussing the current landscape in their respective countries and new ways they can approach EI&B through recruitment, development and culture.

Opening doors to remarkable refugees

After lunch, we spent time discussing the importance of responsible hiring, specifically hiring refugees, with Helene Van Melle, Deputy Director of Tent Partnership for Refugees; Karolina Mastalerz, KFC HR Director at Amrest; and Emilia Stroe, CPO for US FOOD, Romania. These three leaders shared their experiences hiring refugees and value they bring to our restaurant teams and our brand. A key theme throughout this discussion was readiness. To be successful in this endeavor, the organization must be trained and prepared to welcome new refugee team members while we also need to prepare refugees for the role they’ll play within the KFC family.

Hamdi Ulukaya, the founder of Tent Partnership for Refugees and the CEO and founder of Chobani, summarizes the impact a stable work environment has on a refugee by saying, “The moment a refugee gets a job, is the moment they stop being a refugee.”

Continuing our journey

Finally, we wrapped the day by sharing market-specific action plans for how we can continue progress toward our EI&B commitments through recruitment and retention strategies and social purpose programs.

With partners like Tent Partnership for Refugees to help us reach and engage refugees at KFCs throughout Europe and beyond, we’re hopeful on our mission to ensuring our teams are as diverse are our customers, and every KFC team member feels a true sense of belonging.