Building a Better Wynn for Employees

There’s not much Wynn Resorts can do now to dispel the perception that under Steve Wynn’s rule it could be a dangerous workplace for women who caught the billionaire’s eye. Ensuring a safer, more responsive workplace in the future, that’s a different matter.

Wynn Resorts has established a new Culture and Community Department dedicated to supporting diversity, gender equality and fair treatment in the workplace.

The department is the second major employee-focused initiative since Matt Maddox took over as CEO two months ago amid a sexual harassment scandal that forced the resignation of Steve Wynn.

Wynn, who has denied any misconduct, resigned as chairman and chief executive in February and has since sold off his sizable financial interest in the company. But his shadow still hangs over the company, cast by allegations that he regularly pressured female employees to perform sex acts, that he’d been doing it for years, and that their complaints to higher-ups were ignored as an unspoken matter of policy. Now, regulators in Nevada and Massachusetts want to know what the board of directors and top executives may have known about all this. The company also is facing a slew of lawsuits from angry shareholder groups who believe their trust as investors has been violated.

Maddox, a charter member of the management team and one of the executives said to be closest to the disgraced tycoon, has moved energetically to repair a corporate image that’s been badly tarnished. Within days of becoming chief executive he announced a new family leave policy, a new employee scholarship program and a mechanism for providing paid time off for workers involved in outside charitable activities.

The new Culture and Community Department he unveiled this month has a broad remit to promote employee diversity, inclusion, education and professional development and foster stronger relations with the larger community.

“Now more than ever we are committed to ensuring equality, creating leaders, and giving back to the communities in which we operate,” Maddox said. “The launch of our Culture and Community Department speaks to this promise and will help us continue to be the industry employer of choice.”

Heading the department is Corrine Clement, who has held top positions in marketing, community relations and human resources for companies as diverse as MGM Resorts International, Coca-Cola and the Phoenix Suns. She has worked for Wynn Resorts since 2014, serving as executive director of human resources for Wynn Palace in Macau and most recently as executive director of innovation and creative development at Wynn Las Vegas.

The company describes her as an “avid fund-raiser” who has “helped raise millions of dollars from employee-giving campaigns for a wide variety of causes”.

One of the department’s signature campaigns is a Women’s Leadership Forum. Its goals are many: tackling gender gaps in management; providing career growth opportunities for female employees at all levels; promoting pay and title equity; and, not least, ensuring a safe workplace. The forum will be conducting focus groups, studies and surveys designed to pinpoint inequities and help shape new programs to address them and will be sponsoring mentorships and panel discussions and town hall meetings related to these aims.

The company said more initiatives like these are in the works and they will be shared publicly.