Championing Culture Change through Employee Community Engagement

Wendy Shields

Senior Manager
Corporate Citizenship

Altria Client Services

In my 16 years at Altria, I've seen how our employees and our companies have been involved in the community, generously giving and volunteering. I now lead employee community engagement for Altria and its companies and I could not be more excited. In the last year, we’ve worked to evolve our employee community engagement program. We knew this change was timely as we see our company and culture changing rapidly. We wanted to better connect our employees with the community and give them more voice in the process.

Altria Contributing Together (act), supports employees at the individual and group community levels. Employee ambassadors nationwide, grow inclusion, create local connections and offer new perspectives. I see the pride grow in our employees as they lead their teams and make a big impact in their community. Through their efforts, they build stronger and more inclusive teams. Employees also see more choices and flexibility. Oftentimes, they can rally their team to volunteer or give together. We don’t just focus on doing, but on people.

act gives all employees greater choice to work on activities and causes that matter to those participating. For example, our collective community giving campaign was expanded nationwide and employees nominated non-profits to receive the funds raised. Employee donations still go into the community to provide much needed services and meaningful impacts but now employees have more say as to where donations go. And, as in the past, Altria provides generous support to enhance all of our employee community engagement efforts nationwide. With the launch of act, we had our first ever Giving Tuesday campaign. Our ERGs polled their members to determine which non-profits to nominate and sales regions from AGDC, who weren’t able to participate before the nationwide rollout, rallied to the cause. Altria matched employee donations one-and-a-half times, raising over $36,000 and attracting over 200 donors.

We call it act because you can actually go and do something. We know when you participate in an act program you're not only engaging in your community, you’re engaging more deeply at work. And that shows up every day.

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