Lean In At Sysco
In 2017, Tehzin Chadwick, EHS director for Sysco International Foodservice Operations – Americas, set out to create a networking space for female leaders. Inspired by one of Sysco’s core values, inclusiveness, and Lean In, Sheryl Sandberg’s bestselling book, she formed the Lean In Sysco chapter as a way for women to come together. “The research studies and anecdotes that Sandberg outlined in her book was a game changer for my personal career mindset,” said Tehzin. Topics like taking a seat at the table, asking for stretch roles and not self-selecting out of opportunities are all part of changing the conversation. Diversity and Inclusion initiatives have gained popularity in the corporate landscape in recent years, sparking discussions about societal changes and their impact in the workplace.
What Does Lean In Mean for Women at Sysco?
The Lean In Sysco chapter meets on a quarterly basis for one hour via video conferencing. Over 200 Sysco female leaders across countries where Sysco does business (Canada, United States, Bahamas and Costa Rica) participate in this chapter meeting. “Whether it’s a guest speaker who has generously and candidly shared their journey, or an early-in-career chapter member courageously asking a question that might be on everyone’s mind there is always a learning or insight to take forward,” said Rachel Baptiste, national director, talent management, Sysco Canada. “I leave each meeting with renewed energy to pursue my goals!"
What is the textbook definition of a Lean In Chapter/Circle?
A Lean In chapter is typically a larger community and support group, made up of a network of closely affiliated circles. Circles are smaller groups who meet more frequently, usually 8 to 12 members in size, made up of women in similar stages in their personal and professional lives. The success of any Lean In group is consistency. “Our Sysco Lean In chapter is limitless,” said Tehzin. “We want as many female leaders as we can get to join the chapter. Our goal is to drive development of smaller circles at each operating company across our organization.”