How American Express Sets the Industry Example for Inclusion and Diversity
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The company employs and supports a diverse group of colleagues to reflect the wide range of customers served
Inclusion and diversity are more than just marketing buzzwords. Genuine respect and inclusion for all cultures, ethnicities, and belief systems are critical for a harmonious, thriving workplace. When a company is serving a global customer base, these principles become even more essential. Named the 2019 company on the 100 Best Companies to Work For by Fortune, American Express knows the value of inclusion and diversity. The company understands that the best way to serve its wide range of customers across the world is to hire and engage meaningfully with colleagues from all walks of life. Amex supports inclusion and diversity through a variety of initiatives such as its wide range of colleague networks that foster inclusion, support colleagues and celebrate the diversity of the company’s workforce.
Amex promotes the principles of fairness and respect for everyone on multiple fronts. The company believes that a world in which everyone is represented and included is simply the right kind of world. Leaders understand that companies with ethnic and gender diversity in the executive suite outperform more homogenous organizations.
Black Engagement Network
The company has a far-reaching coalition of colleague networks of which the Black Engagement Network (BEN) is one of the largest and oldest. Founded in 1987, the Black Engagement Network serves as a support network that enables African American colleagues to be successful professionally, helps attract and retain diverse talent, and helps create a dynamic and culturally enriched work environment.
Talking the Talk and Walking the Walk
The leaders and managers at American Express are conscientious and intentional in their approach to inclusivity. They remain committed to creating an environment in which diverse groups of colleagues can bring the best of themselves to work every day. In short, they believe that “inclusive leadership is simply good leadership.”
It doesn’t stop with simply supporting colleague networks; they actively participate in them. This includes participating in initiatives like the Executive Women’s Interest Network Shadowing program, in which vice presidents spend one full day shadowing a senior executive. They also carve out time for cultivating multicultural talent by participating in the Executive Black Engagement Network and Executive Hispanic Origin and Latin American Network summits.
Developing Community Leaders
American Express’ leadership pipelines begin with attracting, developing, and retaining top talent, and they extend this philosophy to their communities as well. Since 2007, American Express has invested more than $80 million to develop more than 100,000 social purpose leaders who are tackling some of society’s most complex issues.
One of American Express’ three philanthropic platforms is Developing New Leaders for Tomorrow. Under this giving initiative, which recognizes the significance of strong leadership in the nonprofit and social purpose sectors, American Express makes grants focused on training high potential emerging leaders to tackle important issues in the 21st century.
To learn more about the leaders who have benefited from American Express leadership programs visit www.leaderstories.org
Focusing on What Matters
Amex is committed to supporting colleagues and their families at every stage of their lives by providing resources and benefits that cater to their physical, financial and emotional well-being. This includes an award-winning global corporate wellness program, Healthy Living and a wide range of benefits including:
- Core Health Benefits
- Paid Parental Leave (U.S.)
- Wellness & Prevention
- Tuition Assistance
Amex is also making workplace reintegration easier for those who’ve taken time away from a traditional career with their Finance Professional Re-entry Program. This program is ideal for professionals who stepped back from their careers to care for children or loved ones and are ready to re-enter the workforce. The program gives participants access to one of the many finance functions of American Express including:
- Corporate Planning & Analysis: “We Keep The Train on the Tracks”
- Business Unit CFO Group: “Decision Drivers for AMEX”
- Controllership: “You Can Count on Us”
- Global Tax: “We Solve Taxing Issues”
- Global Treasury: “We Move the Money”
- Corporate Development: “We Do the Deals”
- Investor Relations: “We Shape the AMEX Story”
It’s not hard to see why American Express was named one of Black Enterprise’s 50 Best Companies For Diversity.
Learn more about how American Express weaves diversity and inclusion into the fabric of their organization.
This piece is brought to you in partnership with American Express.