Roles & Responsibilities in ERGs

ERGs are coordinated by volunteer co-leads who are supported by the HR ERG Coordinator and HR Business Owner.

ERG Leads

  1. Thoughtfully commit to the growth and development of their ERG for at least one year; discuss the time needed with current supervisor to get their support/approval
  2. Be prepared to engage with the HR ERG coordinator and others to complete the steps outlined in Steps to Establishing and Maintaining an ERG
  3. Be prepared to meet with the HR ERG Coordinator on a monthly basis.
  4. Be prepared to engage and reflect on a learning process during ERG formation with feedback from ERG members, the HR ERG Coordinator and others
  5. Plan to meet regularly (~ four times/year) with their Executive Sponsor
  6. Be focused on and an advocate for an action-oriented ERG that balances creating a supportive community with providing service to the Institute.
  7. Provide information, feedback and ideas as needed for the pilot program for ERGs

HR Business Owner and HR ERG Coordinator

  1. Support and grow interest in ERGs from potential ERG leads
  2. Provide training/support/consultation/on-going coaching for ERG leads/members in:
    • Communication
    • Meeting practices
    • Conflict resolution
    • Decision-making
    • Distributed leadership
    • Problem-solving
  3. Help ERG leads find the balance between creating a supportive network and being action-oriented, solution focused groups who assist MIT with recruiting, retention and other topics
  4. Be available to ERG leads for up to one meeting/week during the start-up phase

    HR Business Owner: Alyce Johnson, Manager of Staff Diversity and Inclusion (alycej@mit.edu)
    HR ERG Coordinator: Judith Stein, Organization Development Consultant (jstein@mit.edu)

Executive Sponsor

The Executive Sponsor plays a critical role in the success of each ERG. The Executive Sponsor is not an honorary or figurehead position; Executive Sponsors should plan to play an active role with the ERG. One element of that role is to make sure the ERG stays focused on problem-solving and assistance to MIT’s diversity/inclusion efforts in the areas of recruitment and retention.

Executive Sponsors may be identified by ERG members, may volunteer or may be invited to participate by HR staff. Executive Sponsors will be selected after review by the senior leadership of the Human Resources Department.

Ideally, Executive Sponsors are:

  • Leaders in highly visible positions within the Institute leadership (e.g., Deans, Department Heads/Directors, Chancellor, Institute Professors etc.)
  • Committed to playing an active role in developing/supporting the ERG, particularly as the group gets started (e.g., accessible to the ERG leads, coordinating with HR ERG Coordinator, etc.)
  • Committed to a two-way developmental process: the professional development of ERG leads/members and their own development in the sponsor/advocate role
  • Willing to participate in brief cultural literacy training as part of their orientation to the ERG sponsorship role

Executive Sponsors may:

  • Be from a different demographic than the group they sponsor
  • Provide some funding to their ERG
  • Assist the ERG with locating funding beyond the minimal amount available from HR
  • Assist the ERG leads with making connections for speakers, etc.

ERG Resource People

Individuals with experience in diversity/inclusion, group process, communications and/or deep knowledge of MIT who will:

  • Be available for occasional consultation on specific questions from ERG co-leads
  • May attend ERG meetings and offer input
  • Where appropriate, act as champions for ERGs at MIT
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