In 2018, the Hollywood Commission engaged Member Organizations in one-on-one and group discussions and collaborative work sessions
including the Human Resources and Diversity, Equity, & Inclusion Roundtables—to learn about organizational practices aimed at eliminating sexual harassment and other forms of bias and building diverse and inclusive workplace cultures.
Over the past year, there has been increased focus on the issues of sexual harassment and gender imbalance in the workplace. This has resulted in growing pressure on Human Resources systems and leadership in the form of an increased number of complaints, along with increasing demand for transparency and consistent communication. While new policies continue to be created, the approach to measurement and policy application across the industry has been uneven. The freelance economy, which represents a significant segment of the industry, exacerbates the situation, as freelancers lack representation, advocates, or support. While there is no universal solution, the following areas represent shared challenges that we can turn into opportunities for progress.
TONE FROM THE TOP
Investment from senior leadership with clear organizational directives and adequate resources to fulfill them are key to effective sustainable change.
MEASUREMENT + DATA
Measures of success are not fully defined, perceived as complex, and—when they exist at all—are applied inconsistently. Analysis and transparency of available data remains an area of opportunity across the board.
IMPLICIT-BIAS + BYSTANDER TRAINING
While unconscious-bias training helps raise awareness and develop common language, such training does not appear to have moved the needle on culture change. In fact, research shows that when undertaken as isolated programs with no follow-up, relief from harm, or substantive cultural shifts, this kind of training can be detrimental to a culture of inclusion. Thus, it is crucial that implicit bias training be paired with bystander training that provides individuals throughout an organization tools to confront problems they identify essential.
TRAINING AND PROACTIVELY MANAGING FOR ELIMINATING BIAS
Managers at all levels must identify behavior that shows potential for harassment and retaliation. Appropriate action can be taken to intervene and address problematic behavior before it escalates to a violation of an organization’s code of conduct.
INDUSTRY FRAGMENTATION + FREELANCERS
Various players and workforces (e.g., production companies, above- and below-the-line employees, and freelancers) add a level of complexity to solutions and outcomes. The freelance community, in particular, faces a high level of vulnerability.
Challenges associated with the freelance economy include the difficulty of identifying reliable, unbiased systems for those who lack representation under the existing structures and systems.
The work to formulate successful strategies that will lead to more equitable outcomes across the industry is ongoing. We look forward to facilitating future forums that will help us identify solutions to accelerate progress as well as advising on and executing these solutions in partnership with our Member Organizations across the industry.