ALPFA

ALPFA

I&D
Empowering Latinx leaders in Chicago via Speed Networking at Groupon HQ
14 November 2017
ALPFA Chicago + Groupon

90 attendants
26 Grouponers
1 night of networking

Our speed networking event in partnership with ALPFA (Association of Latino Professionals for America) brought in almost 90 diverse professionals from the Chicagoland area. The event was aligned with Groupon’s corporate goals of building community with professionals across the city, fostering an environment that welcomes respect, integrity, and inclusion while encouraging everyone in attendance to continue to build themselves professionally. Groupon en Espanol worked together with ALPFA to educate business professionals on how to network using best practices developed by ALPFA on follow up, recommended questions you might ask during an event, and other great insights on how to continue to build your network to create more opportunities for you and others.  

As an added bonus, Groupon CFO and Groupon en Espanol executive sponsor Mike Randolfi opened the event by speaking about the importance of inclusion and diversity as well as the work our ERGs have done to move the company forward. Grouponers and ERG chairs Jackie and Milan also added insight into their personal experiences working to build a more inclusive environment at Groupon.

ALPFA Speed Networking Event @ Groupon

NETWORK – ENGAGE – CONNECT

ALPFA Chicago, dedicated to empowering Latinx leaders in the Chicago area, is holding a speed networking event in conjunction with Groupon. And you’re invited!

Meet and connect with ALPFA leaders, local professionals, as well as Groupon CFO Mike Randolfi, who will be on hand to share his perspective on the value of diversity and inclusion in the workplace.

Don’t miss your chance to connect with other experienced Latinx movers and shakers in Chicago.

This event is co-sponsored by Groupon en Espanol, with support from Women at Groupon and Groupon Vets.

**This is a 21+ event**
***Space is limited, and participation will be determined on a first-come, first-served basis***

ALPFA Speed Networking @ Groupon

Milan McGraw – Senior Manager of Operations

Milan McGraw – Senior Manager of Operations

MILAN MCGRAW

Senior Manager of Operations
Chicago, IL
Joined: 2015

In all honesty, we weren’t prepared for the amazing stories Milan would tell about growing up feet away from the Groupon headquarters in Chicago, changing jobs from a little ecommerce company in Seattle, and supporting veterans around the country. Enjoy.

Who or what inspires you?

What inspires me the most is looking outside the office window on Larrabee Street and being able to see my old home in Cabrini-Green. Growing up, most folks from the Cabrini Housing Projects did not go to college, so being able to see what remains of it outside my window is a gentle reminder I must continue to do great things and set the example for others to follow. When my family left Cabrini, we moved to Humboldt Park where we still reside today. Each time I come to work, I am reminded of where I came from and inspired to know that with hard work, we can come from any place or from any situation and be anything we want to be.

What’d you do before you joined Groupon?

Prior to Groupon, I worked at a little company in Seattle named Amazon. While a successful company, it’s not the best place to work if you have kids. Having a place to work that provides work-life balance is my number one priority. I always remembered the Groupon folks I came across while working for Dyson a few years ago, and everyone always said great things about working at Groupon. Once I began my search to move back to Chicago, Groupon became my top choice. I could not have made a better decision: Groupon provides a great work-life balance, room for growth, and there is always something new to work on.

What was your first impression of Groupon?

My first impression of Groupon was several years ago while visiting the 600 West Chicago building and seeing everyone in a green Groupon jacket. I was like “Wow, this place must be amazing!” People were smiling, having fun, and were excited to talk about what they were working on. Overall, my impression is still the same: Groupon is an incredible company that changes lives. Simply put, Groupon is a company that wants everyone to have fun and add value to the lives of both employees and customers.

How does your work impact Groupon’s mission of becoming the daily habit in local commerce?

My work impacts Groupon’s mission of building the daily habit in local commerce by selling goods from local suppliers on our e-commerce platform, educating vendors about how to set up their supply chain to grow with Groupon’s volume, and assisting in planning the right selection mix for our customers. Everything we do in operations is centered around connecting with local vendors and helping them scale their business on our platform.

“It’s really about coming together as a Groupon family to support one another, identifying the skill sets needed to help grow the business, and cultivating internal talent by providing people with the feedback and coaching needed to learn and grow within the organization.”

What’s your biggest Groupon accomplishment?

One of the most rewarding moments for me was last year when my team learned SQL and Tableau, then started running their own SQL queries without having to seek outside assistance. Team members took a variety of MOOCs, including Coursera and Udacity. It was exciting news the first time I received a message notifying me that a member of my team had completed their first Tableau class. Being able to retrieve, visualize, and display our own data has helped our department become the authority on operations. In the past when we worked on several dashboards and made requests to other teams for assistance, we had to rely on their availability to assist. Today, when we need some advanced analysis, a new dashboard, or an innovative way to communicate a story, our team can build our own reporting structures to retrieve the data. It’s really about coming together as a Groupon family to support one another, identifying the skill sets needed to help grow the business, and cultivating internal talent by providing people with the feedback and coaching needed to learn and grow within the organization.

Have you won any awards recently?

I recently won 1st place in the GLO-BUS: Developing Winning Competitive Strategies Competition. I acted as a senior executive at the best-performing company in an industry setting where a team of students ran companies and crafted strategies aimed at achieving superior financial performance and market leadership; the exercise was conducted in a strategy course at Morris Graduate School of Management.

What do your parents think you do?

My parents literally think I sell coupons…it’s hilarious. Every time I see them they ask “…any new Groupon coupons?” referring back to a time when we used a Groupon to have dinner at Al’s Char-House in La Grange. Hilarious!

So you’re involved with basically every Employee Resource Group as well as the Employee Volunteer Program. Can you tell us about your involvement in some of these groups?

I joined Groupon for Veterans in order to give back to those who have served and continue to serve. I am a U.S. Marine and my daughter is currently serving on active duty at Marine Corps Base in Honolulu. Participation in the Veterans ERG for me was a must for me. Educating others on the professional skills associated with military service is crucial: most people think of diversity based on race, gender, generations and thinking styles, but often forget military veterans. I feel that veterans add a ton of perspective to the workplace; most of us have traveled all over the world and are extremely serious when it comes to getting the job done. I joined G4Vets to continue sharing my military experiences with others, assist transitioning veterans with connecting to Groupon, and translate their leadership skills to the workplace. My most memorable event with our G4Vets was taking ten non-veteran Groupon volunteers to the Jesse Brown Veterans Hospital to volunteer for an afternoon. Most were in awe that such a place exists and were in shock that there were so many veterans who required special attention. We walked with veterans, read the newspaper, and listened to one veteran’s story from WWII—an Army Signal Intelligence Officer—who later became a postal police officer. It was not the volunteering that meant the most to me, but being able to share this experience with others who have no exposure to some of the challenges facing veterans.

If you could do any other job for a day, what would it be and why?

I would be a fireman because when a fireman gets ready for work, nobody asks, “What do you do?” Kids dig them, they straight up save lives, you get paid to help others, and at the end of the day, you’re a hero.

What’s your favorite local business?

My favorite local business is Yamato’s Foot Massage Bar. There is nothing better than reflexology! Get the Groupon!

Can you write a Groupon haiku?

The best view in town — Having coffee with my team — Making things happen

Tell us something about you that might surprise us!

I run two marathons per year (sometimes more). My most recent 2017 marathons include the Chicago Marathon and the US Marine Corps Marathon in DC, just two weeks later. I run these two specific marathons every year (and will for the rest of my life) so I can run for all those who are unable to run and for those who have sacrificed their lives to keep us safe.

 

Groupon for Veterans

Blacks In Groupon

Parents@Groupon

Pride@Groupon

GrouponEnEspanol

Women@Groupon

 

Groupon World Headquarters

Jackie – Supply and Strategy Manager, BeautyNow

Jackie – Supply and Strategy Manager, BeautyNow

JACKIE

Supply & Strategy Manager – BeautyNow
Chicago, IL
Joined: 2012

From launching a learning series for employees to overseeing Groupon’s Latino-focused resource group to helping raise 20k for hurricane relief, we can sum up Jackie’s involvement in Groupon with one word: inspirational.

What’s your favorite Groupon memory?

My favorite memory is the dinosaur coming into the office and scaring people as they came out of the elevator!

How does your work impact Groupon’s mission of building the daily habit in local commerce?

I work on BeautyNow supply strategy. My goal is to ensure that consumers are getting the appointments they are searching for, when they want them. Because our value proposition is not price, it’s important for us to understand how we can build a product that gives people a robust selection of services that they’d prefer to book and conveniently pay for through a few clicks of a button!

Who or what inspires you? 

People who are not afraid of the unknown and who welcome calculated risks!

What was your first impression of Groupon?

I thought it was such a fun company and a great fit for me professionally.

What are your biggest accomplishments here so far?

In my past life, I worked at Ernst & Young as an auditor. Although it was a great experience that allowed me to build a great professional foundation, I could not have done some of the innovative things I’ve done had I not decided to completely change career paths. At Groupon, I have worked on helping build the framework of what is currently our unstoppable beauty business; building out injectable service focus and training programs; a national launch of surgical offers; and some up-and-coming novel ideas in the BeautyNow space (stay tuned for those!)

I’m incredibly proud of the launch of my “Ongoing Learning Series” which truly stemmed from my undying yearning to learn and grow professionally and personally. We’ve had over 300 participants and over 12 sessions so far! I’m looking forward to continuing this program as well.

I’m also proud of the work I did with Matt Rolnick on our Hurricane Relief Auction. This all came about with a simple idea to bring our HBW (Health, Beauty, & Wellness) team together for a small auction where we could contribute in a small way with our crafts, skills, and time to a truly necessary cause. After Matt sent a few emails asking for donations, we got the ball rolling. I sent an email to our CEO, Rich Williams, asking if he’d be interested in offering something to the auction and he responded in less than 10 minutes! The kind of support we received for this auction from everyone around the office—including our incredible support functions—was astounding. Through this auction, we were able to raise over 20k to hurricane relief! Matt and I are also so humbled to have been nominated by the organization to receive a Groupon Green Award (Groupon’s internal award for employees) for exhibiting our core value of “Community” in light of our fundraising efforts for hurricane relief!

Jackie with members of Groupon en Espanol on Groupon Chicago’s roof deck

Also, my work as Chair of Groupon en Español has been incredibly rewarding. With only a year under our belt, GEE has been able to make huge progress across all diversity initiatives in the organization. We’re constantly trying to think of ways we can grow our marketplace, employee base, and continue to engage customers of all backgrounds on our platform. I love this aspect of my role because I truly get to see people who are passionate about what they do. My GEE team does not do the work for the pay (since it’s a volunteer effort), they do it because they truly care about inclusivity and diversity. I am so proud of my team and am inspired by them every day!

GrouponEnEspanol

Groupon World Headquarters

Commemorating UIC’s 2017 Latino Graduates

Commemorating UIC’s 2017 Latino Graduates

UIC’s 31st Annual Recognition Dinner: over 600 attendees, 200 graduates, and one fiery mariachi band.

Lauren Mullins – Campus Recruiter // Fernando Diaz – Divisional Sales Manager & Groupon en Español Chair 

Fernando: As the Chair for Groupon en Español, one of my goals is to create an inclusive work environment by making connections with Latino communities which will lead to recruiting opportunities. This event both helped solidify the partnership with UIC and start other partnerships with organizations within UIC. The highlight of the evening was the presentation of the graduates. They were allotted 30 seconds each to say a few words. Many of the students thanked their families and friends who had done so much to help them achieve this milestone.

Lauren: UIC’s Hispanic/Latino undergraduate population increased to 30.7% this year, which continues their designation as a Hispanic Serving Institution (HSI). The Annual Recognition Dinner recognizes and honors the accomplishments of their Latino graduates among family and friends. There were over 600 guests in attendance, 200+ of which were graduating students. While this wasn’t a direct recruiting event and there was limited interaction with students (they were focused on celebrating with friends and family), Fernando and I were able to network in person with key members of several diverse campus organizations: Latin American Recruitment and Educational Services (LARES), Association of Latino Professionals for America (ALPFA), and Career Services, forging stronger relationships than we would have with cold outreach to these groups.

The goal of the event was to strengthen our relationship with and show our support for UIC as a whole and the hispanic/latino community. Our attendance aligns with Groupon’s inclusion and diversity values! It would be great to continue to build relationships with the campus partners we met and celebrate the recent grads and Groupon new hires! The best part of the night? The amazing student speeches when they were recognized for graduating AND the UIC mariachi band: Mariachi Fuego!

Learn more about our Employee Resource Groups (ERGs) and what we’re doing to foster a more inclusive and diverse workplace!