PrettyGreen wins Blueprint diversity mark

PrettyGreen is the latest agency to secure The Blueprint status for its actions to promote racial diversity in comms.

Blueprinted CEO Elizabeth Bananuka: PrettyGreen 'has left no stone unturned'
Blueprinted CEO Elizabeth Bananuka: PrettyGreen 'has left no stone unturned'

Agencies can receive the mark by signing up to a series of commitments aimed at encouraging diversity. The Blueprint found PrettyGreen – the fifth to receive full status since the scheme launched in June 2020 – had overhauled many elements of its work, practices and procedures, and culture since spring last year.

In the past 18 months, the agency's leadership team set up an internal diversity and inclusivity (D&I) committee and hired an inclusivity consultant to review the organisation and deliver a training programme to all employees. PrettyGreen also invested in a talent specialist, who focuses on blind profiling to ensure D&I bias does not have a negative impact on hiring choices.

As part of its vision to deliver ‘creative less ordinary’, the agency works with a diverse range of specialists, including SXWKS, People Like Us and the Brixton Finishing School.

The work has been driven by Jessica Hargreaves, co-chief executive of PrettyGreen & The Producers and board lead for diversity and inclusion. She said: “The PrettyGreen Group is thrilled to have been awarded Blueprint status as we have been dedicated to ensuring that our agency drives the highest D&I standards. Our vision is to deliver creative less ordinary and embrace diverse thinking across every aspect of the agency from recruitment, training, strategy and creative output.

"The Blueprint has been a brilliant guide for our D&I committee to drive further change within our business operations. We encourage all agencies to use this as we have a responsibility to deliver action, being in the unique position of having the ability to influence consumers through marketing communications. We will continue to evaluate our progress and take further action.”

The applications were marked by an independent panel of judges: Henry Rowling (founder, Flying Cars innovation agency); Sasha Daly (advocacy and influencing consultant); Olivia Danso (writer and project manager); and Nyree Connell (healthcare policy manager and Blueprint strategy advisor).

Blueprinted, the company that runs The Blueprint, is headed by Elizabeth Bananuka, founder of BME PR Pros. She said: “The PrettyGreen Group’s commitment to diversity and inclusion is nothing short of outstanding. From a robust recruitment and selection process to a passion for creating inclusive work and a healthy working culture, the agency has left no stone unturned and, crucially, all with considerable senior management buy-in, support and commitment. Their application made for a heart-warming read. It was a reminder that small agencies can make big diversity and inclusion moves. The judges and I are honoured to award The Blueprint to The PrettyGreen Group.”

Manifest became the first UK PR agency to achieve The Blueprint status last year. Stronger Stories then Hope&Glory and Ketchum followed.

Applicants must secure 101 points to achieve The Blueprint status, and more than 70 points to achieve Ally status. Agencies to achieve the latter include Blurred, InFusion, Cirkle, CCgroup, Cowshed and Harvard.

The Blueprint has four application rounds a year and applications are judged by an independent panel who have taken part in a Blueprint diversity workshop. The deadline for the next round of agency applications is midday on Thursday 2 December 2021. Applications can be requested via the website.

The diversity mark will open to in-house teams from January 2022.

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