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Working with PRIDE at Publicis Sapient

Ross came together with colleagues to launch and grow the PS business resource group, PRIDE, across the globe and was impacted both personally and professionally along the way.

Ross Gruebel
Ross Gruebel

I was first introduced to Publicis Sapient (PS) over 13 years ago when a friend invited me to join a sailing trip and I met someone who worked there. While chatting, I mentioned I was looking to transition into consulting, since I had studied business and management. As he told me about PS, what stood out was the focus on culture, people, and being proud of your work at the end of the day. He invited me to apply, and a few weeks later, after an interactive interview process, I joined PS in Washington, DC. I am now a senior product manager in Munich, Germany, where I specialize in business requirements for large digital transformation projects. I am also a global co-lead for PRIDE, our business resource group that focuses on diversity and inclusion initiatives for the PS community.

During my first year at PS, a few colleagues and I talked about how we sometimes felt insecure being our full selves while at a client’s office. We felt comfortable being open when we were at PS, however.  Discovering that we had similar experiences, we started forming a community for LGBTQ+ people and allies at PS to come together.  This turned into the formation of PRIDE, our LGBTQ+ business resource group. Anyone at PS is welcome to participate in PRIDE, whether LGBTQ+ or an ally. People get involved because they want to see PS continue to make our workplace as safe and inclusive as possible for people of all backgrounds. We also want to push the boundaries of workplace diversity and inclusion for all employers in our respective locations. Some of our teammates need to know that they have a safe place to go because they live in regions or countries where being LGBTQ+ is unsafe or they face discrimination in their communities.

What I hope to achieve with PRIDE is to ensure PS is always a safe place for LGBTQ+ people to bring their full selves—rainbows, unicorns, and all!

From our humble beginnings hosting happy hours in one office, to hosting workshops with global participation, PRIDE has grown tremendously over the past decade. We expanded into Europe in 2014, when I moved to Munich. Soon after, we began the process of opening a chapter in India—the day the India chapter officially launched was probably our biggest achievement due to the long history of the criminalization of the LGBTQ+ community there.  Over the years, we have participated in Pride/CSD festivals, hosted #SpiritDay, Transgender Awareness Week, and other programming in Washington, DC, Toronto, Munich, India, Detroit, Minneapolis, and more.

Being a member of PRIDE has helped me to be comfortable and confident in who I am as a member of the LGBTQ+ community. It hasn’t always been easy for me to be open at work, especially having worked in the government sector and at a parochial school before joining PS.  What I hope to achieve with PRIDE is to ensure PS is always a safe place for LGBTQ+ people to bring their full selves—rainbows, unicorns, and all!

Some companies spend a lot of money to place their rainbow logo in as many ads as possible.  At PS, I have been impressed with how many of my colleagues deeply care about diversity and inclusion and treat each other with respect—whether gender, orientation, race and ethnicity, specialization, or culture.  If you’ve been looking at one of our open positions at PS and wondered whether you will be respected or accepted as a queer person, the answer is a resounding YES!  I just hope that when you join PS, you’ll also join PRIDE and our other BRGs, too.

Ross Gruebel
Ross Gruebel
Senior Product Manager
Based in Munich, Ross is co-lead for PRIDE, the Publicis Sapient business resource group for LGBTQ+ people and allies. A little fun fact about him: Ross started flying small, 4-passenger airplanes in high school before he had a driver's license!

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