Partners in Progress

The company’s diverse and active business partnering groups, riding the One Toyota wave, want you!

October 23, 2018

Digging In -- Team members join forces to compete in dragon boat racing at the DFW Dragon Boat, Kite and Lantern Festival in Irving, Texas, in May.

So, you say you’re not a joiner?
Well, your fellow team members who have formed the company’s many and varied Business Partnering Groups, would like you to reconsider that lone wolf persona. Because, as they see it, the value of shared experience, culture, ethnicity, know-how and commitment — both to Toyota and the communities in which it does business — has never been greater.
Most of these employee-driven networks first began to take shape long before One Toyota took shape. But that realignment has helped to make them even more vital and relevant. In fact, the groups now boast more than 80 local chapters at 20 affiliate offices and facilities in North America.
Odds are, if you go looking, you’ll find one or more that resonate with you.
For instance, do you have a passion for protecting the environment? Then you might want to learn more about TERRA. Its members participate in community activities and create and launch programs to promote sustainable living and business practices.

Heave Ho! -- Members of the Toyota Veterans Association chapter based at TFS Customer Service Center Central in Cedar Rapids, Iowa, participate in a "Pulling for Honor" fundraiser for Eastern Iowa Honor Flight, a nonprofit that sponsors trips for veterans to visit war memorials and other national monuments.

Or perhaps you’ve served, or continue to serve, in the military. Then the Toyota Veterans Association (TVA) might be for you. Its members advocate for and support current or former service members and their families who’ve made sacrifices in defense of the nation and its ideals around world. You don’t need to be a Veteran to join; just have a passion for those who either have or who are serving.
Meanwhile, ToyotAbility focuses on the needs of people with physical, non-visible, temporary and permanent disabilities. That includes, among other outreach efforts, promoting and shaping the design of current and future Toyota products that aim to expand the mobility of people with such needs.
Cultural and ethnic interest are also powerful forces that can bring team members together. Examples include the African American Collaborative (AAC), Toyota Asian American Society in Alliance (TAASiA), Toyota Organization for the Development of latinOS (TODOS), and Multicultural Outlook Shaping An Inclusive Canada (MOSAIC). Each of these groups works to serve the needs of team members while also providing a sounding board for the company as it plans, designs, develops and markets products for specific customer constituencies.
Still other team members have aligned themselves around topics related to creating an inclusive culture. Prominent among these groups are Women Impacting and Influencing Toyota (WIIT) and Spectrum, which aims to improve the workplace environment for LGBTQ team members and their allies as well as provide feedback on business activities.
Show of Support -- Spectrum members march in the Dallas Pride parade in September.

Religious beliefs can also be a source of shared experiences and values. That’s certainly true of Toyota Christian Fellowship (TCF).
Then there’s the sense of purpose that can arise from striving for professional development and career advancement. That’s Young Professionals’ (YP) core reason for being with its focus on creating opportunities to build relationships, engage with business leaders and serve the community.
And if you’re the proud owner of a four-legged, furry or another form of non-human friend, you might want to check out ToyoPets. They work to boost Toyota’s standing among animal advocates.
The possibilities are nearly endless. It’s important to note that even if you don’t have a direct connection to a particular affinity group, you are still very welcome to join. Members of every group greatly need and appreciate allies.
Feeding the Hungry -- Toyota Christian Fellowship members and their families in Alabama volunteer at Manna House, a food bank in Huntsville. In addition to contributing more than 200 hours of their time, the group helped generate $3,300 in donations.

And even if you don’t have a group at your location, you can still connect with other team members informally to discuss shared interests. When it’s all said and done, it’s about getting engaged — no matter the spark that ignites your particular fire.

Intrigued? Click on the links above that are calling out to you and take that next step. Or  contact one of the Regional Engagement site leaders below. Your fellow team members look forward to welcoming you to their group.
By Dan Miller

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