Manuel Goncalves, Executive Director of Communications at KPMG, Shares Diverse Voices Insights
New York Book Launch: Increasing Diversity in PR
Manuel Goncalves, Executive Director of Communications at KPMG, was co-chair to the New York Book Launch of Diverse Voices, a collaborate piece featuring the stories of 40 extraordinary communicators. He spoke with Doug Simon, CEO at D S Simon Media, about the importance of bringing more diversity into an organization. The interview took place at Twitter, where the book launch was held. The new book from the PRSA Foundation is designed to help communication leaders and professionals better understand the challenges faced by emerging majorities in the field. The stories of determination were inspiring to Manuel and a key reason to why he helped work on the event. To purchase Diverse Voices, visit www.diverseleadership.net.
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Nyree Wright, Porter Novelli
Emile Lee, Dun & Bradstreet
Michael Sneed, Johnson & Johnson
Brenden Lee, Twitter
Torod Neptune, Lenovo
Yanique Woodall, The Home Depot
DOUG: Hi I’m Doug Simon, D S Simon Media. We’re here at the New York book launch for diverse voices, a very important book in the communications industry. The co-chair of this event is Manny Goncalves.
MANUEL: Thank you so much.
DOUG: Manny is executive director of communications for KPMG. Congratulations on putting this event together.
MANUEL: Thank you. It’s good to be here.
DOUG: Why is it so important to create awareness on this important topic of diversity within the communications industry?
MANUEL: You know, I think you know when you look at any profession, if you don’t have diverse thought, diverse cultural backgrounds, diverse experiences, you’ll never arrive at the best solution for your clients, your company or whatever. So I think it’s critical, especially now, to continue to bring new and diverse talent into this profession.
DOUG: Great. And to nurture them as well.
MANUEL: Yes. And I think that’s the critical part is understanding what the dynamics are that are driving not only attracting but potentially driving away some of diverse talent in this business. So we have to address it as a community and we need to bring it to the forefront. So everybody awareness is higher, so that people are beginning to invest in their people. And we’re creating programs that welcome people of all cultures, all backgrounds, etc..
DOUG: Right. Now this event is about that, but also the book Diverse Voices. I imagine you reading it, you’ve learned a lot. I have, going through it. What are some of the lessons you’ve learned?
MANUEL: Well what struck me about the book was the journeys of all these amazing professionals and the different challenges that they all had to overcome as they grew throughout their careers. For me it was the persistence and perseverance, for me it was the continuous ability to attract mentorship and coaching from others that they worked with, and just that tenacity to overcome everything that they were faced with was really motivational and inspiring.
DOUG: And it’s also greatness succeeds. I mean from having the conversations, these are exceptional human being, regardless of diverse or not. They’re just amazing, so many amazing qualities with knowledge, thoughtfulness, ability to express, getting along with people. That’s so key. What are ways that you think reading the book can help people relatively new in the industry, whether they have a diverse background or not?
MANUEL: Yeah I think it comes back to learning the lessons of others who have come before you. Understanding what it is that motivates people and it doesn’t matter what your background is, right talent and hard work will always win. So it’s just staying determined, staying inspired, staying motivated, staying engaged, continuously educating yourself and getting better in terms of your day to day job and ultimately having a career path for yourself that you choose to follow. And I think the examples in this book are tremendous examples for anybody that’s coming up in this business right now.
DOUG: That’s awesome. Thanks so much for helping to make this event happened sharing your time and your wisdom.
MANUEL: Great thanks.
D S Simon Media is proud to donate its services in support of the Diverse Voices Initiative.