Personal care and cosmetics leaders take on unconscious bias against race and gender

Personal care and cosmetics leaders take on unconscious bias against race and gender

It’s increasingly clear these days that the professional is the political. And a recent initiative known as the CEO Action for Diversity and Inclusion brings this fact into high relief. It also seeks to open a safe and productive dialog in the workplace.

A tagline prominent on the site devoted to the CEO Action reads, “We’re pledging to act on supporting a more inclusive workplace for millions of our employees, our communities and society at large.”

At least 150 corporate executives and the companies they represent have signed on to the pledge, which obliges them to “foster [a] more open discussion about race and gender in the workplace,” according to an item by Elizabeth Olson that ran recently in the New York Times.

Pretty diverse

CEOs from personal care corporations, retailers, specialty chemical makers, and investment firms have all signed the pledge:

  • Benno Dorer of The Clorox Company
  • Alex Gorsky of J&J
  • David Taylor of P&G
  • Rick Goings of Tupperware (the company owns 6 personal care and cosmetics brands: Avroy Shlain, BeautiControl, Fuller, NaturCare, Nutrimetics, and Nuvo)
  • Brian Cornell of Target
  • Jeff Gennette of Macy’s
  • Andrew Liveris of The Dow Chemical Company
  • Ed Breen of DuPont
  • J. Michael Chu and Scott Dahnke of L Catterton

Taking action

The pledge that these business leaders have signed explains that they all “believe we also need to address honestly and head-on the concerns and needs of our diverse employees and increase equity for all, including Blacks, Latinos, Asians, Native Americans, LGBTQ, disabled, veterans and women.”

It goes on to outline 3 objectives, which are in essence to make it okay to discuss diversity at work, educate workers about unconscious bias, and to share what works and what doesn’t among the CEOs who have pledged.

The full statement also acknowledges “that these three commitments are not the complete answer, but we believe they are important, concrete steps toward building more diverse and inclusive workplaces. We hope our list of signatories will grow, and we invite other CEOs across America to join us.”

Setting course

The CEO Action for Diversity and Inclusion dovetails with existing corporate initiatives. And select companies are featured on the site for programs already underway, like P&G’s efforts to ‘raise the bar for women.’

A page highlighting P&G’s program explains that the company is “committed to achieving gender balance at all levels of the Company while continuing to make sustained progress across our diverse organization.” And the page text goes innumerate the “actions” and “outcomes”the company has documented on the way toward its goal of gender balance.

Learn more about the CEO Action for Diversity and Inclusion here.

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