tms, HAVI, and Stanley learn and lead at women’s networking event

HAVI WISE Leadership Team

In our continued efforts to create a gender-equitable workplace through learning, resources, and opportunities, our North America Women’s Employee Resource Group WISE hosted its Annual Networking Event this October. Nearly 140 women and allies, including members of senior leaderships across tms, our parent company HAVI, and its business units, gathered in Chicago to create meaningful connections.

Melanie Ley, Manager, Administrative Services at HAVI, and Rachael Zigrossi, Account Manager, Packaging Services at tms introduced the group to Ronald McDonald House Charities (RMHC) and shared the important and historical connection between the organization and the HAVI Group. To support RMHC of Chicagoland & Northwest Indiana, participants in the first breakout session assembled approximately 1,650 snack pack, which will serve as grab-and-go options for RMHC families. Their assembly provided an engaging way for participants to network while doing good for the Chicago community, completing 135 volunteer hours toward HAVI’s larger Better Future Blue Print goals.

WISE event attendees putting together RMHC snack bags

Later in the day, WISE hosted its inaugural “Women in Leadership Interview Series” to spotlight women leaders in North America and provide insight on a range of topics, providing support and insights to women at all levels. Corinne Rice, VP People Team at tms and WISE leadership member hosted the first panel, featuring Wendy Malmassari, Vice President, Global Vendor Management at tms, Padmini Mandavalli, Chief Information Officer at tms, and Dani Schooley, Senior Director, McDonald’s Business Management at HAVI. Panelists discussed how they’ve leveraged the power of networking, and the contributions WISE has made to create a more equitable workplace and develop a community to support women, as well as ways men can serve as allies.

It felt like we, as a committee, really hit our stride with planning this year’s in-person networking event. Watching so many women and allies flow in and hit the ground running networking and building new connections with their colleagues made the months of planning worth it.

In the end, the success of the event depended on attendees committing their time and focus, especially during the small group discussions. It was clear all who joined us—from our CEO to my teammate who started mere weeks before the event—made that commitment to themselves and one another.

Sara Blackwood
Manager, Brand Partnership

To cap off the panel and conclude the networking event, panelists and participants discussed their “lollipop moment.” Taken from a TED Talk entitled “Leading with Lollipops,” Drew Dudley coined the phrase to describe a small yet powerfully significant moment when someone said or did something that made your life fundamentally better. Often, we don’t realize the importance of the moment until later and participants were urged to think of their moment and commit to how they plan to pay forward these moments by showing everyday leadership in their role.

Speakers onstage at WISE leadership event

Learn more about WISE

WISE is North American  Employee Resource Group (ERG) that creates advocacy voice for female employees by providing a platform designed to foster valuable connections, and provide development opportunities to help elevate their careers and increase representation at all levels of HAVI across all its business units, including tms.