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Together we can move more

Last week's big digital live event under the motto “WE Embrace Equity” marked the start of further collaboration among Bertelsmann's divisional women's networks. Here’s the recap.

Riverty Mar 9, 2023
Riverty workers giving themselves a hug for International Women's Day

​Committing ourselves to fostering a fair and inclusive world for all is not a one-off. Although days such as International Women’s Day support us in acknowledging the importance of our actions, we as a group recognize that this is a change, we need to drive all-year round in order for it to become reality. ”And the more we are joining in on driving this change, the bigger our impact will be”, Riverty United Women Coordinator, Helen Koch, Junior DEI Consultant and Coordinator of Riverty United Women, exclaims and adds: “For exactly this reason we decided to join forces with the other women’s networks within the Bertelsmann divisions. Because in the end, we are all striving for the same”.

Last week marked the official kick-off of future collaboration between Riverty United Women and women's networks of other Bertelsmann divisions such as herSystemS (Arvato Systems) and FEMpowermentNET (RTL). Together they hosted a joint digital live event under the motto “WE Embrace Equity” for all employees to take part in.

The event started off with an inspiring keynote held by Mirijam Trunk, Diversity Enthusiast and Chief Sustainability & Diversity Officer at RTL, where she explained that reaching gender equality in our society starts with the way we communicate with one another. Choosing our words wisely allows us to build bridges towards empathy. The essence of her speech: By giving the issue a name, such as unconscious or affinity bias, it allows us to speak about it objectively enabling others to understand, so we can tackle it together.

Keeping those thoughts in mind, the event continued with a thought-provoking panel discussion on the topic of “Allyship”. In the panel representatives of the different divisions came together, all showcasing another perspective. Among the panelists were Julia Kloke, CFO at Riverty and Tamara Schwenk, Junior Communications Manager & Coordinator of Riverty United Women. While Julia spoke on behalf of working moms in leadership roles, Tamara was the voice for the young talents. Also sitting on the panel were CHRO Jochen Fuchs from Arvato Systems sharing the importance of Allyship from a people leader perspective and Nico Hofmann, CEO of UFA, who provided insights on how Allyship is fostered in the film industry. RTL Exklusiv TV host, Bella Lesnik led the lively discussion highlighting and considering the different dimensions of allyship.

So, how multifaceted can Allyship truly be?

We have summarized the key take-aways from the event here:

  • It’s always important to network and make connections in order to find a good ally - especially in your early stages of your career
  • Allyship begins with our mindset. Be open to others, ask questions and accept help. Be passionate about what you want to do and be clear about your intended direction. This way, allies will be able to support you in getting there.
  • To be an ally, listen actively, be open-minded and encourage others in what they want to achieve. Let’s be cheerleaders for each other!
  • The core of allyship is building trustful relationships. Fostering that connectivity is best done in person. Even if you start networking in a digital environment, we must remind ourselves to also come together in real-life every once in a while.
  • People leaders make talent grow. By approaching talent see and giving them the stage to become visible, leaders support in paving their way.
  • An organisation provides the framework for its employees to be successful. However, we must recognize that true change comes from within and we all need to take action in driving this movement.


For the women’s networks it is clear: This certainly won’t be the last event they will organize together. Instead, this is the starting point of driving cultural change together as one. Whether that means making others aware of their unconscious bias, tackling taboo topics or speaking up on inequalities. “Together we are committed to creating a better future for us all and the generations to come”, Helen exclaims.

The participants of the panel discussion

Julia Kloke, Tamara Schwenk, Mirijam Trunk, Nico Hofmann, Jochen Fuchs und Bella Lesnik

Participants of the panel

Would you like to learn more about the network? Click here: