How SiriusXM busy DE&I team saves 20 hours per quarter with Kunik

"Any company in any industry could absolutely leverage the expertise and freshness that Kunik brings to the table. I consider them a member of our team."

Nicole Hughey, SVP of Diversity, Equity & Inclusion at SiriusXM

Learn how SiriusXM, the leading audio entertainment company, partners with Kunik to elevate DEI programming through expert speakers and stronger employee engagement. 

  • 20 hours saved per quarter
  • 30% of Employees attended Kunik Conversations
  • Average 500 attendees per Conversation

As true leaders in audio, SiriusXM is the American broadcasting company reaching a total monthly audience of 150 million listeners. Their brands, including Pandora and Stitcher, produce live, on-demand, and curated programming across music, news, sports, podcasting, and more. 

The Problem

Small DEI & people teams can easily become overburdened

Nicole Hughey, Senior Vice President of Diversity, Equity & Inclusion at SiriusXM, works with a small team to impact the enterprise’s 5,000+ employees. They aim to provide holistic education around DEI and how team members can best support one another. For instance, for the last two years, they’ve hosted quarterly “Crucial Conversations” as points of connection. 

Nicole’s team managed everything in-house, without any external support. As a result, the sessions and conversations required all hands on deck, taking focus away from actual engagement with employees

It wasn’t until she met the Kunik team at a conference in 2021 that she realized SiriusXM could have a reliable partner assisting their DEI efforts

The Solution

The SiriusXM and Kunik teams kicked off with a hands-on onboarding phase.

Kunik dug deep into the culture and day-to-day ops of the company, their DEI journey so far, and where Nicole’s team hoped to go next. In her words, “The Kunik team was phenomenal and very flexible. We’ve had the most fun working with them because they truly listen.” 

From there, we dove into a three-step plan to elevate SiriusXM’s DEI approach: 

1. Kunik thoughtfully strategizes employee sessions

Nicole emphasizes Kunik’s help in brainstorming and bringing best practices to their quarterly Crucial Conversations. More specifically, the Kunik team helped SiriusXM: 

  • Craft the sessions’ narratives based on what they hoped to accomplish
  • Foster more employee engagement and interaction (i.e., “How can we bring employees into the conversation?” “How can we ensure they’re fully engaged the entire time?”) 
  • Deliver follow-ups so employees can practice their learnings — beyond the session

“Kunik helped create a very clear end product to put in front of our employees,” Nicole affirms. 

2. Kunik provides a pool of expert speakers

Thanks to Kunik, Nicole and her team have gained access to a previously untapped network of expert talent and guest speakers. 

SiriusXM employees have noticed, too, as Nicole has seen “hands-down phenomenal feedback” about their events supported by Kunik. Comments have ranged from, “The content was so relevant,” to, “We loved the speaker.” 

Nicole also highlights Kunik’s receptiveness to guidance. If her team requests a panel of people who represent certain identity groups, “Kunik works tirelessly to bring us what we need for our specific needs.” 

“The Kunik team listens and gets it. If there is ever a disconnect, they quickly course correct and figure out what’s needed to support us. It is always about the client: our needs and agenda and what we want to see for our organization.” 

3. Kunik handles the execution so you can focus on the engagement

While SiriusXM employees may not be directly familiar with Kunik as an org, they see the high-value monthly programming we help Nicole’s team produce. She explains, “As I’m focused on talking to employees, Kunik manages the execution of those programs in real-time” — resulting in a “more seamless” workflow than before. 

For instance, since Kunik now runs the behind-the-scenes actions of DEI webinars, Nicole’s team can save hours and focus entirely on sharing space and engaging with employees

“We can now be fully present in this experience with our employees. And that alone has no price tag on it. The engagement is what we’re aiming to drive.” 

The Results

Since joining Kunik, the SiriusXM team has seen some impressive metric benefits, including: 

  1. Saving 20 hours per quarter — Before Kunik, it took all four members of Nicole’s team to brainstorm and execute concepts. Now, with Kunik’s help, it only takes two people, which frees up the other two to dedicate their hours to more pressing projects. 
  2. 30% employee attendance rate — The employee opt-in rate demonstrated to Nicole the need they were serving by partnering with Kunik and investing in these conversations.
  3. Average of 500 attendees total — With Kunik's help, they received some of the best feedback they had gotten from attendees about the relevancy of topics and the impact it had on their employees.
“Every year, companies are challenged to consider what they can keep in their budgets. I always make room for Kunik. I say, ‘I have to have them.’ That is really a testament to how well Kunik serves us and the impact they have.” 

The Future

Ultimately, Nicole finds partnering with Kunik effortless, especially since they never drop the ball on requests or deadlines. That reliability is crucial as her team gets organized and grows increasingly complex with scale. Looking forward, “I’m excited to have a partner who makes my life way easier,” she tells us. 

“The team at Kunik are wonderful partners, and we have a really positive working relationship. After a year and a half, I feel that they understand us for sure.”

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